EDINBURGH YOUNG MUSICIANS

Director: Jean Murray, B.Mus, 11 Melville Place, Edinburgh, EH3 7PR

0131-226-3392

admin@e-y-m.org.uk

Emergency phone (Saturday mornings only) 07956-315913

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ALUMNI

EYM is always pleased to hear from former pupils & would welcome more contributions to add to this page.

Rosalind Orr wrote in August 2019:-

I started at EYM in my pre-school year when I was still three.  I remember being in a very old building - which I now know as Bruntsfield House, part of James Gillespie's High School - sitting in a circle playing different singing and clapping games.  I realise now that these were important early lessons in developing an understanding of rhythm and harmony.  I also remember it was great fun and music on a Saturday morning became part of my routine, one that I continue today.  

In my primary years at EYM I picked up the descant recorder, followed by most other members of the recorder family.  Jean Murray was my teacher through these years and taught me to read music.  I played violin for a couple of years at school but realised that I was more suited to woodwind.  In P6 I had an opportunity to learn alto saxophone after school and took to this quickly because of my recorder playing.  My saxophone playing developed to the point where I was able to join Edinburgh Schools' Jazz Orchestra (ESJO) aged 12, as the youngest member.  I still enjoyed recorder playing with friends on a Saturday at EYM, in a quintet and ensemble.

At an open day at the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland when I was 14, I was interested to hear young people playing in a jazz ensemble.  A few months later, with the support of Andrew Carvel, I successfully auditioned for the RCS and was excited to start at the 'Juniors' (Jazz) last autumn.  Attending the RCS has become my new Saturday routine and I have really enjoyed my first year there, studying with Paul Towndrow.  I still play in ESJO too, as well as other bands and orchestras through school and the Council's music service.  None of this would have been possible without my years at EYM and I am really grateful to Jean and all the other teachers who helped me along the way. 

 

Laura Johnson wrote in July 2019:-

EYM was the very beginning of my experience with music. When I was little I went to the musical play classes, and then it was where I first started to play the cello, which I think is an opportunity all young people should get. Later I went on to play in the junior and senior orchestras. I made great friends through EYM, and it gave me the opportunity to explore a vast variety of music. The skills I learned while playing within the senior orchestra enabled me to audition and get into other well-known orchestras such as EYO and NYOS, and now I've also joined an orchestra at Leeds University. I will also always be grateful for this brilliant start to my musical life!

 

Alastair Bowyer wrote in November 2019:-

I was an EYM student from age 5 up to 17. With EYM I learned to play the recorder through the excellent guidance of Simon Rennard, who always managed to balance progressing our skills with having a genuinely enjoyable Saturday morning. Learning the recorder was good fun and allowed me to play a lot of great, and often under-appreciated, music - like at the Baroque ensemble I am a part of at university. My skills on the recorder also greatly helped me to pick up the saxophone when I was older, and the grades I achieved on the saxophone benefited my UCAS application. I am very grateful to Simon and also to Jean Murray for the opportunities that were opened up to me by EYM.

I was also lucky to be able to pass on some of my recorder skills to a group of students I taught during my year volunteering in Myanmar. Teaching music was a challenge, and made me appreciate the ability of my teachers to deal with overactive children, but it was satisfying to pass on a skill that was not normally available to the students of the school and it was very nostalgic to teach out of the same book that I learned from at EYM.