Meet the Cadenza family!
Tom Potten graduated from the London College of Music with honours in 2002, having specialised in composition and contemporary music, studying with composer Kit Turnbull and Jazz leaders Eddie Harvey and Johnny Dankworth. Since leaving there Tom has worked as a freelance pianist and tutor, starting out at the Billericay Music Academy and assuming lecturing and church organ posts along the way before opening Cadenza Music School in 2011. He now teaches in excess of 50 students per week and is musical director of the Stock Music Society Choir and the ‘Fordettes’, a choir based at the Ford offices in Warley. Tom loves the family/community aspect at Cadenza and thrives on seeing the students achieve their musical goals. He is a firm believer in music being fun and enjoyable as well as ultimately rewarding and educational. Tom is our ABRSM point man and has arranged, stewarded and accompanied ABRSM exams dozens of times.
Katherine: Voice and Piano
Katherine Potten is a BA Hons graduate of The Liverpool Institute of Performing Arts (LIPA). Founded by Sir Paul McCartney, the performing university is one of the top in the world and focuses on training its students for a lasting career in the entertainment industry. Katherine completed a 3 year intensive pop music course focusing on vocal technique, performance skill, song writing and the music business. After graduating and moving back to Essex, Katherine joined established function band Soul Desire, singing lead vocals and playing keyboard and guitar. She then went on to study further and achieve Grade 8 in both voice and piano, as well as grade 5 violin. Katherine has taught through Thurrock Music Services and at The Billericay Music Academy but found her home at Cadenza Music School in 2011. Katherine now splits her time between teaching voice and piano, managing Cadenza Music School and being a mummy to Cadenza’s little mascot, Oscar! Katherine is a talented vocalist with an impressive range, pure tone and great performance skill. As much as she enjoys performing she gets a wonderful joy from teaching and running the music school. She prides herself on building a strong rapport with students, making them feel comfortable, and developing their confidence and skill in a fun and relaxed environment.
Alison: Oboe, Clarinet, Saxophone, Flute, Bassoon, Recorder and Piano
Alison Brown achieved Grade 8 in both Oboe and Piano by the age of 18 and attended the Royal College of Music where she studied with top class performers including Roger Lord and Yonty Solomon. She graduated from the Colchester Institute in 1984 and began teaching oboe and piano privately before working as a peripatetic tutor in schools around Essex. Alison attained a PGCE prior to working in Infant and Primary schools as a full time teacher and music co-ordinator. During this time she directed countless concerts and productions and was responsible for delivering the music curriculum for children between the ages of 4 and 12. As well as playing with other leading orchestras in the south east, Alison has been the principal oboist in the Southend Symphony Orchestra for over 20 years and has been selected to play oboe in the pit orchestra for well over a hundred performances with local operatic and dramatic societies. She was the musical director for local amateur choir the Dove Singers for over 20 years. Alison is widely regarded as the top oboist in South Essex and In addition to working as a tutor for the Essex and Southend Young Persons’ Orchestras, Alison was also for several years the sole woodwind adjudicator on the panel for the Thurrock Young Musician of the Year.Believing passionately that music is vital in the wider development of both children and adults, Alison always encourages her students to reach their full potential and gives structured and thorough lessons developing independent learning. She fundamentally believes in the enjoyment of music and that it should be accessible to all. Alison is keen on getting ensembles together and making music a social experience.
Will: Trumpet, Orchestral Brass and Piano
Will Potten has been playing the piano and trumpet for over 30 years and during that time has built up a broad range of performing experience in many different musical styles. He completed a music degree at Girton College, Cambridge University, studying and performing with Martin Ennis, Daniel Harding and Stephen Cleobury amongst others. Whilst at Cambridge, he sang with Girton College Chapel Choir with whom he toured Italy, Mexico and Ireland as well as appearing on their inaugural CD. Will is a qualified teacher, having completed a specialist music PGCE at Exeter University following his degree. In recent years, he has performed and recorded with many local musicians, embracing jazz, ska, and classical music. An ardent jazz fan, Will is a firm believer that learning music should be fun and aims to instill in all his students the grounding for a lifelong love of music.
Marc Wotherspoon is a performer and tutor who has studied, performed and recorded with many artists from the UK, Europe and the USA. Marc began playing drums aged 12 after being given the choice by his mum, while out shopping in Glasgow’s Barrowlands Market, between a cool (well, his idea of cool) pair of trainers or using the money as a deposit for a set of second hand drums. He made a good choice and hasn’t looked back since. He still doesn’t own any cool footwear though. After receiving a full scholarship to study at the prestigious Berklee College of Music in Boston when he was 16 Marc went on to receive his BA (Hons) Jazz Studies from Leeds College of Music in 2001. His influences are extremely varied and having played in all types of bands from Indian Ensembles to Metal bands, Circus Orchestras to Cruise Ship Lounge Bands Marc is extremely comfortable in any musical situation. Marc is a busy session musician who is involved in all kinds of original projects. He is a successful band leader of Programmed2Function, the drummer for Abbey Rogues, as well as being a member of Dolly Parton Live Tribute Show and Shout, Girls Girls Girls 60s Tribute Show.
Pete: Guitar (Acoustic, Electric and Classical) and Bass
Peter Bray is a professional guitarist, bassist and tutor. He studied at Havering College of Further and Higher education and achieved his degree in Music Performance and Technology in 2009 with honours and holds a grade 8 guitar certificate. Since then he has been teaching guitar to all levels in a one to one setting and in large workshops, getting students through their grades, building confidence and playing gigs. He has also played in a large number of bands and musical acts all around the country, including function bands, musical theatre acts, jazz bands and country bands. All of this experience had lead to knowledge that Peter regularly draws on in the lessons that he teaches whether showing how to play a variety of different styles or how to approach performing to an audience.