Rookh Horn Quartet

Programme and performers

Michael Kallstrom – Head Banger

Alisson Kruusmaa – new work

Louise Harris – Dying Haunts

Janet Beat: Harmony in Autumn

Jane Stanley – Lalla Rookh

Drew Hammond – Soliloquy

Artist biographies

The Rookh Quartet began life in 2017 when four of Scotland’s horn players decided to get together regularly to explore – and expand – the horn quartet repertoire. The original plan did not involve doing any concerts – the idea was to get together regularly, to enjoy playing chamber music. This changed when the University of Glasgow offered the Rookh Quartet a lunchtime concert, and the group has since gone on to play in venues and festivals that include The Cathedral of the Isles, soundfestival, and Orkney’s St Magnus Festival, as well as joining players from the BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra, Royal Scottish National Orchestra and Scottish Opera for the International Horn Society’s annual event in 2021.

The first concert also gave the group their name, as they gave the first performance of Jane Stanley’s Lalla Rookh, for natural horn, 2 horns, and narrator. The piece is based on a letter written by a former University of Glasgow staff member and amateur horn player, William Thomson…also known as Lord Kelvin. The letter was written as he was anchored in the harbour of Funchal, Madeira, on board the Lalla Rookh. His natural horn can be found in the Hunterian Museum, in the room directly above the University’s Concert Hall.

Find out more about the piece here in a video exploring Jane’s compositional process in writing Lalla Rookh.

Lauren is the third horn of Scottish Opera.  Before her move to Glasgow she worked as solo horn in the Mittelsächsische Philharmonie in Freiberg in Germany, whilst also completing a masters in solo performance in Dresden. She has spent time in Austria studying the Vienna horn with Hector McDonald (Vienna Symphony Orchestra), and prior to this completed her BMus (hons) at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama in London.

Lauren freelances in the UK and abroad, with many orchestras and chamber groups, including the BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra, Royal Scottish National Orchestra and the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra.

After studies at The Royal College of Music, London, Ian was appointed to the horn section of the Royal Ballet Orchestra. He also worked extensively as a freelance horn player in both England and Wales, notably with The City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra, Halle Orchestra Royal Philharmonic Orchestra and The BBC National Orchestra of Wales.

He joined the horn section of The Scottish Opera Orchestra in September 2007 and also freelances frequently with other orchestras in Scotland. He is a founder member of the Rookh Horn Quartet.

Ian is also a qualified Piano Tuner and Repairer.

Stephanie studied at the Royal Northern College of Music from 2000-5. Following on from her studies Stephanie began her freelance career playing with orchestras including the Halle, BBC Philharmonic, Opera North, Chamber Orchestra of Europe, BBC National Orchestra of Wales, Philharmonia, City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra, Scottish Opera, Northern Ballet and Manchester Camerata. She also played on tour with Grammy Award-winning singer Adele.

Stephanie began her current post as Sub-Principal 4th horn at the BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra in 2009. She regularly participates in workshops and education projects with the BBC SSO including BBC 10 Pieces projects in primary and secondary schools and Tunes for Tots with pre-school children. Stephanie is also one of the regular coaches for the National Youth Orchestra of Scotland, and currently lectures at the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland, a post she has held since 2012.

Stephanie enjoys chamber music and as well as exploring horn music with the Rookh Quartet she frequently joins colleague from the BBC SSO for chamber concerts.

Born in Dundee, Andy Saunders grew up in Staffordshire where he began horn lessons as an excuse to miss science lessons! He studied Music at York University before moving back north to Glasgow to complete his Masters degree at the RSAMD with Hugh Potts.

After graduating he spent a season as Solo Horn of Slovenian National Opera and Ballet in Ljubljana, before returning to Glasgow to freelance. He now plays regularly with the Scottish Chamber Orchestra, BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra, Scottish Opera, Royal Northern Sinfonia, Ensemble Modern, Le Concert Olympique, Daniel’s Beard, and Rednote Ensemble.

Andy ran The Cottier Chamber Project, sits on the board of The Night With…, has been the Co-Chair of New Music Scotland, and is the Performance Consultant for the University of Glasgow’s music department.

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