The Stringcredibles is a string quartet delivering work to support the connection between musicians and audiences, mostly in schools and community settings.
In 2014, we performed for more than 6000 children and family audience members via a number of different projects and worked with over 500 children who participated in music-making projects resulting in a number of new compositions.
Individually, the four members of The Stringcredibles offer many years of experience of working as professional
performers, along side teaching, coaching and presenting.
You can 'Meet The Stringcredibles' in the video opposite.
Catherine Arlidge MBE
'Catherine Arlidge is not only one of our most inspiring, valued and unstinting musicians but also one of our strongest and most idealistic personalities.' Sir Simon Rattle
Catherine combines a career as Sub Principal Second Violin with the CBSO with the role of Artistic and Educational Director of the
National Children's Orchestras of Great Britain. First and foremost a violinist, she has a busy performance schedule, alongside which she has responsibilities for curriculum, programming and artistic collaborations at NCO. Passionate about connecting new young audiences to classical
music, she also creates and presents concerts for Families and Schools for orchestras across the UK.
In January 2014 Catherine became the first violinist - and only the third ever recipient - of the Royal Philharmonic Society and the Association of British Orchestras Salomon Prize, a prestigious award celebrating the outstanding contribution of orchestral players to the UK's musical life.
She is currently Board Member of the Association of British Orchestras and has presented at conferences
In 2016 Catherine was awarded an MBE in the Queens's New Years Honours list, for her services to music education in Britain.
A first Class honours graduate and instrumental scholar from New College Oxford, Bryony completed her Masters studies at the Royal Academy of Music, graduating with distinction.
Her first full-time job was with the Ulster Orchestra and she is now a member of the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra second violin section.
Bryony is involved with many of the CBSO's learning and participation projects and has delivered freelance workshops for Live Music Now, Artis Education, English Touring Opera and the Junior RNCM. As a violin teacher, she completed her LRAM teaching diploma with distinction and was a member of Philippa Bunting's First String Experience team at the Junior Royal Academy of Music
Amy was a scholar at the Royal Academy of Music graduating with 1st class honours and an LRAM teaching diploma. She continued at the Academy as a postgraduate student gaining a PGDip Distinction and a DipRAM for outstanding performance.
Amy was a member of Southbank Sinfonia in London and worked with many of the major symphony orchestras there and around the country before joining the CBSO in 2009.
Amy was lucky enough to be a member of orchestras such at The National Children's Orchestra, National Youth Orchestra and European Union Youth Orchestra. These organisations have given her the passion and drive to become a musician and to pass on her experiences to others through education and performance.
Helen studied Cello with Margaret Moncrieff, then with Douglas Cummings, Derek Simpson and Lionel Handy at the Royal Academy of Music where she won solo and chamber music prizes before graduating with the Academy's highest award, the Dip. R.A.M. in both solo and ensemble playing.
As cellist of the Hellier String Quartet, Helen performed widely throughout Europe and Asia, including a private recital to the Princess of Wales. The Quartet studied with the Amadeus, Alberni and Borodin Quartets, then later at The Banff Centre for the Arts in Canada, and were Ensemble in Residence at the Britten-Pears Foundation in Aldeburgh.
Helen was a member of the BBC Concert Orchestra for 9 years before joining the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra in 2006. At the CBSO, she regularly performs in CBSO’s chamber music series “Centre Stage”, collaborating in ensembles with visiting artists Baibe Skride, Sakari Oramo, Peter Donahoe and Simon Trpeski. She has curated the last four seasons of Centre Stage programmes.
Helen is a Visiting Teacher of Cello at Birmingham Conservatoire, and was formerly cello teacher and coach of ensembles and orchestras at the Junior Department of the Royal College of Music. A co-founder of The Birmingham Cello Workshop, she coaches cello ensembles ages 7-80 of all abilities, takes masterclasses and directs its 40-strong cello orchestra on their popular Cello Playing Days.
OUR ASSOCIATE MEMBERS
Isobel started the viola aged 8 thanks to free lessons at her Leicestershire Primary School and despite having no idea what a viola was! She soon realised that playing an instrument is fun and decided that it might be a good way to earn a living. After studying at the Royal College of Music she began working with orchestras all over Britain including the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra, Welsh National Opera, Opera North, Sinfonia Viva and the CBSO. Alongside playing, Isobel teaches viola at Nottingham University & Redhill Academy and in the last few years has also trained as a British Sign Language interpreter. She loves dogs, especially beagles!
Jane studied violin at the Royal Scottish Academy of Music and Drama with Simon Fischer. After gaining her Masters with distinction she worked with the Orchestra of Scottish Opera and freelanced in Scotland for five years.
In 2002 she became a member of the City Of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra. Along side a busy orchestral schedule, home and abroad, she developed a passion for education work, leading and presenting a wide variety of learning and participation projects. She works with children with special needs, adults with Dementia and visits schools inspiring people and bringing fun into the classroom. She also coaches many young people involved in orchestras and performs Chamber music with fellow CBSO players.
A graduate of the Royal Academy of Music, Charlotte gained both her first class honours degree and Masters degree with distinction under the guidance of Maurice Hasson and later Philippe Honore. Charlotte was also a Chamber Music and Open Academy Fellow during her final year at the Academy.
Nurtured by the Northamptonshire Music and Performing Arts Trust and later by the National Youth Orchestra, Charlotte knew that she wanted to become a professional violinist from an early age and since joining the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra in Autumn 2014 she has enjoyed an exciting balance of orchestral programmes, education work, chamber concerts as part of the Centre Stage programme as well as performing with the BCMG.
Charlotte is very excited to be joining the Stringcredibles and sharing their enthusiasm and vision for musical education.
Project Management & Development
Rebecca has worked in arts outreach, engagement and education for more than 10 years, devising and delivering projects and programmes from local to national level.
With a passion for combined arts and equal access, Rebecca has developed strategic work with a diverse range of arts and cultural organisations. She has also managed fundraising and comms, gaining support from key funders such as Arts Council England, the British Film Institute, the British Council and a range of independent trusts and foundations.
Rebecca believes in the power of public engagement in the arts, and has a particular focus on work with young people, schools, and underserved communities. She is delighted to bring this experience to her work with The Stringcredibles.
Like all registered charities, The Strincredibles is governed by a Board of Trustees who oversee the smooth-running of the organisation, particularly in terms of good governance and financial propriety. You can read biographies of our Trustees below.
Sarah Gee is Managing Partner of Indigo-Ltd, a leading UK-based consultancy for arts and cultural organisations. Before co-founding Indigo, she was Director of Communications for the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra, where she was responsible for rebranding the ensemble, and increasing fundraising income and ticket sales to over £3 million per year.
Originally trained as a hornplayer, Sarah has nearly twenty-five years of fundraising, marketing and communications experience in the arts and charities, having been personally responsible for raising over £70 million. She is also in demand as a visiting lecturer at key universities, and as a trainer, coach and international conference keynote speaker, including the Middle East, Europe and Japan.
Peter retired from the CBSO in 2014 having been the Principal Timpanist for 25 years.
During that time he was heavily involved in the orchestra's education work forming the "Little Big Time Band" a six piece ensemble, giving concerts at Primary Schools around the West Midlands.
He was also instrumental, along with Catherine Arlidge with devising and presenting the initial Family Concerts at Symphony Hall.
Calum worked at the CBSO for 3 years as Corporate Relations Manager and took a real interest in the work players were able to deliver in schools and for children. He successfully engaged with a number of corporate partners to support this stream and, working with the musicians, developing bespoke creative programmes for businesses to support.
After leaving the CBSO, he established his own business to support a number of charities and businesses in developing partnerships, finding sponsorship and engaging with supporters. In 2016 he became the Regional Director for the IoD (Institute of Directors) in the West Midlands.
131 Sellywood Road
Birmingham B30 1XA
Tel: 07976 205794