The Harrogate Clarinet Summer School
About the course
The Harrogate Clarinet Summer School is a stimulating programme for all levels of clarinet players from grade 4/5 standard through to professional led by John Cushing with Juliet Colville.
The course consists of a combination of classes, ensembles, performance workshops and the option to take individual lessons/advice auditions from some of the internationally renowned tutors.
The aims of the programme are to give participants greater awareness of their abilities, confidence in their clarinet playing and experience in music making. A friendly and relaxed atmosphere is created to encourage all those attending, with an emphasis on participation. Those wishing to play/perform will be asked to prepare appropriate set pieces for classes, and chamber works for coaching in ensemble playing.
The beautiful and historic spa town of Harrogate, with its parks and gardens, castles and abbeys and closeness to the breathtaking scenery of the Yorkshire Dales, is an ideal venue for the course; relaxing, invigorating and inspiring.
We accept that many course members have a great distance to travel. Although we cannot offer accommodation on the Saturday night preceding the course, rooms can be available for the Thursday night at the end of the course (over 18s only). Harrogate has many hotels and B & B’s and we will be only too happy to help with any arrangements should you wish to arrive on the Saturday preceding the course.
Born in London, John Cushing grew up in Liverpool. He began playing the clarinet at the age of thirteen and, after leaving school, studied with Sidney Fell at the Royal Manchester College of Music, where he was awarded the Hiles Medal. He later continued his studies in London with John McCaw. After five years as Principal Clarinet with the Orchestra of Welsh National Opera, John was appointed Principal Clarinet with the Royal Scottish National Orchestra in April 1978, a post he held until September 2014, 36 very happy and fulfilling years. Since joining he has appeared as soloist with the Orchestra on many occasions, and has an extensive Concerto repertoire, including James Macmillan’s clarinet concerto “Ninian,” which was written for and dedicated to him in 1998. John performed premieres of Ninian in Edinburgh, Glasgow and London and later around the UK, as well as on tour in Bergen, Norway. He made the world première recording of the work with the RSNO and Alexander Lazarev. He was delighted to perform the piece in Scotland again in 2014 with RSNO after a period of 16 years and thrilled that new audiences responded to it so enthusiastically. In other concertos John has appeared as soloist with conductors as diverse as Rattle, Berglund, Bamert, Gibson, Jane Glover, Takuo Yuasa, Weller, Lazarev, Walker and many others. In the past few years, John has given several other World and Scottish première performances of works for solo clarinet and chamber ensemble, including pieces by Sweeney, John Adams, Ted Kirk and again James Macmillan, this time a piece for clarinet alone – From Galloway which is also again dedicated to him. As a guest orchestral player John has performed as Principal clarinet with many of the British symphony orchestras. John Cushing has a particular interest in chamber and contemporary music. Over the years he has been a member of and played with groups as diverse as Paragon, Allander and Hebrides Ensembles, has worked with many string quartets and the clarinet, soprano and piano trio Vocalise. He is currently busy in the Phoenix wind trio with Katherine Bryan (flute) and David Hubbard (bassoon) as well as the wind quintet Primi whose players are members of both the RSNO and Halle. John has taught clarinet at the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland (formerly the Royal Scottish Academy of Music and Drama) since 1978 and gives masterclasses and recitals throughout the country, primarily with pianist Scott Mitchell. He was awarded an Honorary Doctorate from RCS in July 2014 and is the recipient of the Royal Philharmonic Society Salomon Prize 2015.
Juliet Colville studied clarinet at the Royal Northern College of Music with Nicholas Cox, Linda Merrick and Colin Pownall (bass clarinet). She was awarded a Major Entrance Award from the RNCM to continue her studies and graduated with a Master of Music in 2006. As a student Juliet was the leader of the National Youth Wind Orchestra for 2 years, playing in concerts around the UK and in Ireland. Since graduating Juliet has worked with orchestras including the Hallé Orchestra and the National Concert Orchestra. She spent four years as the clarinet, tenor saxophone and flute player for the Thursford Christmas Spectacular with whom she made several TV broadcasts including for BBC Songs of Praise. She has also performed as a deputy on the South Pacific UK tour and for Sondheim’s Merrily We Roll Along for Theatre Clwyd. Juliet also enjoys recitals and education work with her reed trio, the Arundo Trio as well as being in demand as a woodwind teacher in the North West. Juliet has been a tutor on the Harrogate Clarinet Summer School since its first year.
Juliet also performs with various other ensembles including the British Clarinet Ensemble and St Clements Wind Ensemble.
Registration and fees
Secure bookings may be made online through the event website.
Clarinet Summer School – Residential (includes tuition fees and full board accommodation): £450.00
Single Room Supplement (there are a limited number of single rooms): £90.00
Clarinet Summer School – Non Residential (includes tuition and meals): £350.00
Accommodation only (full board for non playing friends and family): £300.00
Thursday night accommodation (available to those who are over 18): £45.00
Individual lesson – Grade 4/5 standard (please note, places for individual lessons are limited and will be dealt with on a first come first served basis. Multiple lessons are available where appropriate): £32.00
Individual lesson – Grade 6/7 standard: £39.00
Individual lesson – Grade 8+: £45.00