Trossachs Quartet / string quartet
Accomplished string players, with experience of playing with orchestra, opera companies, chamber music groups and more, the members of the Trossachs Quartet are highly versatile musicians.
Diane Merson-Jones, violin I
On completion of her studies at St. Mary’s Music School, Edinburgh, then the Guildhall School of Music and Drama in London, Diane moved back to Scotland and took up a position with the Scottish Opera Orchestra, where she remained for 10 years.
Wanting more variety in her work, she chose to move into the freelance world and has been working regularly with all the major Scottish orchestras. This has included touring Britain and abroad with the BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra, The Royal Scottish National Orchestra and The Scottish Chamber Orchestra.
With these orchestras, she has played at many international festivals including The Edinburgh International Festival, BBC Proms, Prague Festival, Cheltenham Festival and The Aldeburgh Festival in Snape Maltings. Diane has also been principal second violin with the Scottish Ballet Orchestra since 1998.
Solo performances include Bach Double Violin Concerto for The Paul Taylor Dance company, The Lark Ascending by Vaughan Williams and Scheherazade by Rimsky-Korsakov for The Ayrshire Symphony Orchestra.
In 2006 Diane took up a post teaching violin at Wellington School, Ayr where she very much enjoys working with the pupils, giving her the chance to pass on to others what she has enjoyed learning throughout her musical life.
Chamber music is a particular love of Diane’s, and she is pleased to be a founder member of the Glasgow Viennese Strings and the Trossachs Quartet.
Stephanie Brough, violin II
Stephanie is originally from Broughty Ferry but has lived in Glasgow since starting her studies at the Royal Scottish Academy of Music and Drama in 1999. During her 5 years of study, she obtained a Bachelor of Music Degree with honours and a Postgraduate diploma in performance, winning the Concerto, Duo and Governors’ Chamber music prizes in her final year. She studied with Jerre Gibson and Tony Moffat at the RSAMD and continued her studies with Simon Fischer in London after she graduated. Since leaving music college, Stephanie has freelanced with most of Scotland’s professional orchestras: The Orchestra of Scottish Opera, Scottish Ballet Orchestra, Scottish Festival Orchestra, Royal Scottish National Orchestra, BBC SSO and the Ulster Orchestra in Belfast. Concert work has included performing with artists such as Andrea Bocelli, Rod Stewart, Michael Bublé and an upcoming concert at Queen Elizabeth Hall, London. A keen teacher, Stephanie teaches in and around the Glasgow area and was a participant in the 2005 and 2007 Starling-Delay teaching symposiums in New York.
Maggie Miller, viola
Maggie was born and educated in Perth. She studied viola with Michael Beeston at RSAMD, winning the viola prize in her fourth year.
After graduating, she freelanced at home and abroad with the Orchestra of Scottish Opera, the BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra, the Scottish Chamber Orchestra, Scottish Ensemble, BBC Radio Orchestra, STV Orchestra and the City of Glasgow Philharmonic.
She became a full time member of The Orchestra of Scottish Opera in 1988. She returned to freelancing after the birth of her children.
She has always enjoyed chamber music and has performed with many different ensembles. She toured extensively with the Glasgow Viennese Strings before becoming a founder member of the Trossachs String Quartet.
Maggie also played regularly with the Scottish Bach Ensemble with whom she performed the Telemann Viola Concerto. Her other musical interests include teaching violin and viola at Dollar Academy.
She directs the Mendelssohn on Mull Children’s String Summer School, coaches for the Scottish Chamber Orchestra’s Scrapers and Tooters, and has coached the National Youth Orchestras of Scotland (NYOS) Children’s Orchestra.
Maggie also works regularly for Artlink, bringing music into dementia wards.
Rosie Townhill, cello
Rosie graduated from the RSAMDwith a BMus (Hons) in 1998 and a Certificate of Postgraduate Studies (performance) in 1999.
She studied with William Conway and Robert Irvine and was a finalist in the Governor’s string recital competition in 1997 (won by Rudi de Groote, former principal cello with the BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra, now principal with Scottish Opera).
Since graduating from the RSAMD, Rosie is now a member of the Scottish Ballet Orchestra and a regular freelance player with the BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra.
She has also worked with Scottish Opera, the Scottish Bach Consort (performing a Baroque concerto in 1999), and has toured Europe with Brit-award winning rock band Belle and Sebastian.
She performed at Glastonbury Festival 2002, and has featured on BBC Television and STV. She also appears on a CD recording for Scottish folk singer Michael Marra.
Rosie has performed solo recitals in Edinburgh and Argyll as well as numerous chamber music ventures, including regular appearances at the Mendelssohn on Mull Festival. She is also employed as a cello teacher for North Lanarkshire Council, and as a cello and piano teacher for Fernhill School in Rutherglen.