Rod Skipp: Artistic Director and Lower Strings Tutor
I am a New Zealand born cellist and the Artistic Director of In Harmony Liverpool. I have been with In Harmony since 2009 and teach Lower Strings (cello and bass) as well as conducting the Everton Youth Philharmonic and West Everton Children’s Orchestra.
I really enjoy working with the children and young people on a daily basis and seeing how quickly they pick new things up and develop as musicians, and my favourite thing is seeing the orchestras come together each week.
I started the cello when I was 5 years old and after a long journey and lots of practice I ended up moving to the UK and completing a Master’s degree at the Royal Northern College of Music in Manchester. I enjoy listening to all types of music and am also a keen follower of sport, particularly rugby, football and cricket.
Alex Dunn: Deputy Artistic Director and Upper Strings Tutor
I started playing the violin when I was six years old. I later took up the clarinet as well, but stuck with the violin and singing, studying at the Royal Northern College of Music in Manchester. I started playing with the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra in 2007 before joining In Harmony in 2009.
I really enjoy looking back at videos from our very first rehearsals, it's amazing to see how far everyone has come!
Outside of In Harmony I particularly enjoy outdoor activities like kayaking and mountain biking, or anything competitive!
Laura Picken: Upper Strings Tutor
I have been with In Harmony Liverpool since September 2010 and teach Upper strings - Violin and Viola. My favourite thing about the job is seeing the children progress, and my best memory is taking the children to the BBC Proms in 2013.
I have been playing the Violin since I was 6 years old and studied at the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland.
As well as In Harmony, I also teach musicianship to the Philharmonic Youth Choirs and work as a freelance musician around the North West.
Merlyn Sturt: Upper Strings Tutor
I have been with the project since the beginning, teaching upper strings, bass and occasionally percussion, specialising in Viola.
I started playing piano at age 5 and violin at 7 swapping to viola at 9. Music has always been a massive part of my life and I can’t imagine it being otherwise. I enjoy teaching, singing, composing and playing and will try my hand at anything involving strings or hitting.
I love working with In Harmony Liverpool and the opportunity to help make music part of the lives of the children of West Everton.
My other interests include cycling, cooking, DIY and taking ages to wade through overly ambitious books.
Mary Bowell: Lower Strings Tutor
I teach double bass and cello, and have been playing the cello since I was 7 years old. I love sharing the rewarding experience of making music with children and young people at In Harmony. It’s wonderful to watch them respond to this with enjoyment; putting in the commitment and energy that enable them to grow in skill and maturity.
I also love chocolate, spending time with my husband, two teenage sons and cat, and being involved in the leadership of Jubilee Church Liverpool.
Eve Harrison: Brass and Composition Tutor
I teach composition (how to make up your own music!), trumpet and trombone for In Harmony.
I love playing with other people and making up music that creates colours and stories in my head.
Carolyn Yates: Woodwind Tutor
I started working for In Harmony as the woodwind teacher in 2013 and I absolutely love it, the children are inspirational. My main instrument is the clarinet but I also play the flute, saxophone and violin.
As well as working at Faith Primary School, I enjoy playing in bands for many shows around the North West and also in orchestras such as the BBC Philharmonic. I love to bake and I have a little puppy called Jasper.
Zoe Armfield: In Harmony Liverpool Manager
I have been with In Harmony Liverpool since it began in 2009 and am the Project Manager. My favourite thing about the job is being able to spend my days with incredible children and incredible musicians.
I've been lucky enough to do some unbelievable things as part of In Harmony - going on the pitch at Goodison, joining West Everton Super Strings on their trip to Derry, going behind the scenes at the Giant Spectacular in Liverpool. However I don't think I have ever felt so proud as when I watched our young musicians perform at the BBC Proms in the Royal Albert Hall! There were lots of tears!
I have been playing the clarinet and piano since I was 7 and I also love to sing. Outside of music, I like to watch films and read books, but recently have been enjoying getting to know my new baby, Oscar!
Jon Hering: In Harmony Liverpool Project Assistant
I started in my role as In Harmony Liverpool Assistant in 2011, having previously volunteered for the project. I work 3 days a week and look after lots of the day-to-day running of the project, such as keeping registers up to date, helping to plan the logistics for concerts, and looking after our equipment and instruments.
I love it when we travel to other cities to play concerts, and the BBC Prom is a particularly fond memory!
As well as In Harmony, I also teach music in special schools around the North West, compose music, and have performed in bands all over Europe, and in New York and Japan.