BVS Conservatoire Representatives

The British Viola Society is very proud to have viola student representatives in all of the UK Conservatoires.  We have six representatives  in place for the 2023 - 2024  academic year and four have already shared their photos and biographies - see below. We are still waiting for further information from our other representatives. Please watch this space.

Hannah Borlase - Student rep from Royal Northern College of Music

Summer Brook - Student rep from Royal college of Music

Emily Clark - Student rep from Royal Academy of Music

Dominic Stokes - Student rep from Guildhall School of Music and Drama

Bekah Choi - Student rep from Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama

Lizzie Rowland  - Student rep from Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama

Erin Vinter - Student rep from Royal Birmingham Conservatoire


Royal Birmingham Conservatoire

Erin Vinter  is a violist from Nottingham, currently about to start her third year of the BMus (Hons) course at the Royal Birmingham Conservatoire, where she studies Viola with Lucy Nolan. She is a keen chamber music and orchestral player and is also an ARCO South Africa teacher at RBC and Benedetti Foundation Ambassador for this calendar year.

Within RBC:

  • Viola course to Cornwall with RBC violists (Feb 2023)
  • Became an ARCO South Africa teacher (Since Sept 2022)
  • Brahms sextet no.1 in B flat major coached by and performed with Bradley Creswick and Caroline Pether in the end-of-year Chamber Music Festival (June 2023)
  • Always been lucky at RBC to have masterclasses from people such as Timothy Ridout, Thomas Riebl, Robin Ireland and many more
  • Trip to France to work on chamber music with Nathaniel Vallois with RBC, RCM, and Purcell students.

Outside of RBC:

  • Benedetti Foundation Ambassador (since Jan 2023)
  • Soloist for the inaugural concert of the Trent Chamber Orchestra playing Romanze by Bruch (Jan 2023)
  • Playing around the Midlands in the International Film

Royal Northern College of Music

Hannah Borlase is about to begin a two year masters at the RNCM. She had the privilege of completing the GRNCM/MusB joint course across the University of Manchester and RNCM. She has been studying under Lucy Nolan and looks forward to continuing to learn with her and begin lessons with Alex Mitchell.

Recently at RNCM our annual Viola Prize competition took place. It was amazing to hear renditions of Hindemith Sonata Op. 25 No. 1, Brahms Viola Sonata No. 1 Op. 120, and Franck’s Sonata in A Major for Violin & Piano arr. for Viola. The performances were energetic, commanding with well-crafted viola sounds - a real treat!! It was also exciting to welcome Louise Lansdown to adjudicate who will be joining us as Assistant Head of Strings in September. Earlier in the year we were able to have a couple of viola masterclasses with Robin Ireland and Lucy Nolan.

Royal College of Music

Summer Brook is currently studying the viola at the Royal College of Music, with professors Andriy Viytovych and Bryony Gibson-cornish and is a BMus(Hons) programme, Royal College of Music, Hilary Fabian & Geoffrey Dellar award holder, supported by Mrs Geraty.

Summer began playing in ensembles at her local music centres in South Devon. At the age of 12 yrs, Summer gained a scholarship funded by The DfE to study at Wells Cathedral School as a specialist musician, where she studied viola with Catherine Lord. During this time highlights included performing at The Royal Scottish Conservatoire as part of their “Beethoven quartets'' series; masterclasses with The Endellion Quartet, Phillip Dukes, Becky Jones, Benny Kim, and Jonathan Barritt. Summer was a member of the National Youth Orchestra and played at The BBC Proms, and at The Konzerthaus Berlin, as part of ‘Young Euro Classic Festival 2019’. Alongside this she was engaged as part of ‘Dartington Festival Orchestra’. In 2020 she was awarded the Yfrah Neaman cup for ‘an outstanding string player’ and in 2021 the ‘Jacob Rowland memorial trophy’.

During her time at RCM, Summer has been principal Viola of the RCM string band, performed at St Paul's Cathedral; played as part of the RCM philharmonic orchestra, performed with her piano quintet at St Mary’s Abbot Church Kensington, played alongside the Sacconi Quartet and the Harlem Quartet. And has had the opportunity to work with conductors such as Martyn Brabbins, Vasily Petrenko and Sakari Oramo. Additionally, Summer has acted as a young ambassador for the Nicola Benedetti Foundation, and worked with NYO, including playing at The DfE Education World Forum and at The PRS tenth-anniversary New Music Biennial concert. Summer also performed a concert of solo and duet repertoire at Budleigh music festival 2022. As well as travelling to Poland to be a part of the ‘Szczecin Classic’ course and festival.

Royal Welsh Conservatoire of Music

Originally from South Northamptonshire, Lizzie owes her musical roots to Northamptonshire Music and Performing Arts Trust. Lizzie is in her fourth year of undergraduate studies at the Royal Welsh Conservatoire, studying under Alex Thorndike, assistant principal viola of the BBC National Orchestra of Wales. As well as performing in all the conservatoire ensembles, Lizzie has enjoyed membership in the National Youth Orchestra of Wales, the BBC National Chorus of Wales, and is on a student placement in the BBC National Orchestra of Wales. Lizzie is very grateful to be playing on a late 1700s copy of a Gasparo da Salò Viola generously loaned to her by the Benslow Instrument Loan Scheme.