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Meet the Staff

James Palmer - Music Centre Manager

James Palmer

 

James studied at the Royal Academy of Music and became Principal Horn in the Irish Chamber Orchestra a year after leaving the Academy. As well as playing with the ICO he regularly freelances with a variety of orchestras including the BBC Concert Orchestra, English National Ballet Philharmonic, Birmingham Royal Ballet Sinfonia and Heritage Orchestra. James has worked with a variety of pop artists including Elton John, Goldie, Tim Minchin and Barbra Streisand. He is currently touring with Pete Tong and the Heritage Orchestra in the UK, Ireland and Ibiza!  As well as teaching for Bedford Borough he teaches for Inspiring Music (Central Bedfordshire), Harrow School, Kimbolton School and Watford Grammar School for Boys. 

 

'Monkey' - Receptionist

Monkey

 

Our receptionist 'Monkey' is helped each Saturday morning by Clare Hewitt.  Monkey and Clare are  always ready to answer any questions to do with the Music  Centre and be a general help to students and parents.  Clare is also the Music Technician for the Music Service, overseeing instrument hire to schools and parents.

 

David  Rose

David Rose

 

David Rose has been the Manager of Music for Bedford Borough since January 2017. Previous to that he was Head of Milton Keynes Music Service for 10 years and, since qualifying as a teacher in the early 1980s, has worked in a wide range of educational establishments in Wales, London and, more recently, Buckinghamshire. As a brass player David has played in orchestras and brass bands in Wales, London and currently Milton Keynes. He likes to keep his teaching skills fresh by working in schools on whole class instrumental projects and with a variety of groups at the Music Centre. 

 

Jessica Bullen

Jess Bullen

 

Jessica Bullen is a saxophone specialist who graduated from the Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama with a first class honours degree in Jazz Saxophone. Jessica is part of a vibrant Jazz scene in the UK and has performed at a variety of events across the country, including the prestigious London Jazz Festival, Brecon Jazz Festival, and further afield at Langnau Jazz Festival in Switzerland. Jessica is also a keen promoter of live music and works with local organisations to bring music to audiences in Bedfordshire. In addition to performing, Jessica works for both Music for Bedford Borough, and the Bedford Music Co-operative as an educator of music. Although the saxophone is Jessica's specialty, she teaches the classical and electric guitar, and enjoys composing and arranging music for small and large ensembles. Jessica is able to bring all of her experience and musical interests to Saturday Morning Music Centre, to offer a wide variety of music education to her pupils.

 

Bryony Burnham

Bryony Burnham

 

Bryony Burnham is a classically trained singer. Bryony studied music at the University of Birmingham and had a year abroad during her degree, in which she studied vocal performance at the University of North Texas in the United States. Whilst Bryony is a professional singer, she can also play the piano and the bassoon. Outside of the Saturday Morning Centre, she teaches singing in schools in Luton and Hemel Hempstead and sings professionally for a number of choral societies and opera companies.

 

Chris Hepworth

Chris Hepworth

 

Chris is the resident expert on all things 'Rock, Pop and IT'.  As well as working at the Music Centre he teaches projects in local schools and is a sound technician in demand by many of the top bands in the UK.

 

Jackie Manderson

Jackie Manderson

 

Jackie is a conservatoire-trained cellist and, as well as strings, also teaches recorders and the 'First Steps' programme.

 

Michael Dodson

Michael Dodson

 

Michael is a first-rate percussionist, whether it be drum kit, samba or African drumming.

 

Will Alleyne

Will Alleyne

 

Will is a self-employed musician, teacher and Father of three.  Studying Music Composition and Performance at Goldsmiths College (University of London) Since 1996.  Will has worked freelance as a studio and live session violinist, Composer, Arranger, Editor, Producer, and mixer. He still performs on the violin and is currently composing music for production libraries, and publishing houses for use in Film, TV, Theatre and Games with recent music being placed on BBC Networks, Channels 4 and 5 . Will has lived and worked across Asia and Europe.  He has worked as an Educator/ Lecturer within Schools, Colleges and Higher Education, teaching performance, sound engineering, and Music Technology.

 

The Users' Group

The Users' Group

 

These run the Tuck Shop and work closely with the staff at the Music Centre, raising valuable funds for instruments and music.

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