Christian Halstead

Christian Halstead

Christian began learning the violin with his mother when he was 5. He attended Junior and Senior Royal College of Music, where he studied with Dona Lee Croft. He is a freelance player, having performed with several orchestras on both modern and Baroque violin.

Recently he undertook a tour of China, where he played the ‘Lark Ascending’ in several concerts with the Kent Sinfonia to much acclaim. He has been invited to make a return trip next year. Christian also leads the Abraxas Ensemble.

Francesca Simmons

Francesca is a diverse violinist based in London and Wales. She is highly adept at note reading, memorising, playing by ear or improvising, and works in many different styles and genres. Apart from violin she also performs on double bass, viola, musical saw, piano, ukulele, soprano sax and backing vocals.

Her work has taken her through many venues throughout the UK and Europe – from streets, art galleries and concert halls, to clubs, festivals and big tops. She has recorded at Abbey Road, Maida Vale and other studios, houses, tents and fields, and performed live on BBC 6 Music and ITV.

John Garner

John Garner
A graduate of the Royal College of Music and Guildhall School of Music & Drama, violinist John Garner pursues numerous avenues in his music-making, including regular appearances with the Hot Club Ensemble, live-electronica outfit Meraqi, with his jazz quartet and with the BBC Symphony Orchestra. He has toured all over the world with bands and orchestras, to countries including China, Japan, Serbia, Turkey, Germany and France.

Margaret Jackson

Margaret Jackson

Margaret is from a musical family and began Violin lessons at the age of 5. She gained her bachelors and post- graduate diplomas from the Royal Northern College of Music where she studied with Yossi Zivoni.

Since graduating Margaret has worked extensively with many of the UK’s finest orchestras including the BBC Concert Orchestra, BBC Wales, Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra, Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, Royal Liverpool Philharmonic, Ulster Orchestra, as well as the RTE in Ireland.

She has recorded and performed with various bands for EMI, Polydor and Epic records, and also appeared on television at the BBC Proms, X Factor, Children in Need and others. She is an enthusiastic chamber musician, regularly giving piano trio concerts with her family and with string quartets.

Philip Kelynack

Philip Kelynack
Philip began learning the cello with William Howard at Primary School in Australia. He later completed a B.Mus. Perf at the Victorian College of the Arts with Henry Wenig.

Since graduating Philip has enjoyed a diverse perfoming career as a ‘cellist, working around the globe in Chamber Ensembles, Orchestras and Bands.

Stephen Kennedy

Stephen Kennedy
Steve was surrounded by music from as early as he can remember. He used to be lulled to sleep by the sound of his mother playing Chopin on the piano. When he started playing the theme from Batman, off his own bat at the age of three, his Mum decided to give him piano lessons.

Before long he became one of those talented individuals at Westminster Cathedral that Emma now teaches. He went on to study at the Royal Northern College and Royal Scottish Academy of Music. He now tries to fit in as much music making as possible. When he’s not touring the world with Graffiti, he’s doing it with Westminster Cathedral Choir or Tenebrae (Chamber Choir) or any other group willing to book him.

Charlie Cross

Charlie Cross
Since completing his studies at Manchester University and the Royal College of Music, Charlie Cross has pursued a wide-ranging career as a freelance viola player. As well as working regularly for the BBC National Orchestra of Wales and the BBC Symphony orchestra, he plays with a number of chamber orchestras and quartets.

His pop experience includes recordings and live performances with artists such as Duffy, Belle and Sebastian, Pete Doherty and George Michael. He has also performed on a number film soundtracks including Blood Diamond, 300 and Prometheus.