The Riot Ensemble is a modular and elastic group, which draws from the top emerging and professional UK chamber musicians to offer the highest degree of artistic quality and flexibility in programming. We are led by a core Artistic Board who collaboratively develop, plan and produce our projects.
Claudia Maria Racovicean
Tim Rutherford Johnson
Aaron Holloway-Nahum, Artistic Director and Principal Conductor
Aaron Holloway-Nahum is an active composer, conductor, recording engineer and writer about new music. His pieces have been played across the world and recorded in Abbey Road & Maida Vale Studios.
He is currently on the Eötvös Mentorship Programme for young composers, and was recently in residence at the Tanglewood and Aspen Music Festivals. He has recently written for the LSO, Third Coast Percussion, and HOCKET Piano Duo. Previous commissions include the London Sinfonietta and BBC Symphony Orchestra. Aaron has conducted more than seventy-five world and UK premieres and his writing regularly appears in Tempo Magazine and on icareifulisten.com.
Adam Swayne, Co-Principal Artist, Piano; Programme Director
Adam Swayne is a founding member and programme director of The Riot Ensemble. He is widely regarded as one of the most versatile and eclectic musicians of his generation. As a soloist, Adam has performed at major venues throughout the U.K., including the BBC Proms and has given several live broadcasts on BBC Radio 3. He has performed concertos in Europe and America and has recorded for the UHR, NMB and Divine Art Record labels. Through regular concert appearances, commissions for new pieces, pioneering research and educational work, he continues to create and present new and challenging music for all kinds of people. Having previously been Head of Chamber Music at the University of Chichester and a piano tutor at the Junior Royal Academy of Music, Adam joined the lecturing team at the RNCM in 2017.
Claudia Maria Racovicean, Co-Principal Artist, Piano
Romanian pianist Claudia Maria Racovicean is a founding member and director of concert production with The Riot Ensemble. Claudia is currently preparing to record her first album, which will include music ranging from Liszt to Copland to Pintscher.
She has won numerous Romanian and international prizes and made her orchestral debut with the Arad Philharmonic at the age of 16. She has returned to Romania to perform Rachmaninoff’s Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini and Mendelssohn’s Piano Concerto No. 1 with the Timisoara Philharmonic Orchestra. Claudia is an avid chamber musician and teaches at the Musicale School in Harpenden and Archbishop Sumner Primary School in central London.
Ausias Garrigos, Principal Artist, Clarinets
Ausiàs Garrigós Morant regularly performs with orchestras such as the London Symphony Orchestra, Royal Philarmonic Orchestra, Bournemouth Symphony orchestra, Spira Mirabilis and ensembles like Stargaze and Chroma Ensemble. Ausias is a founding member of NASduo, with whom he has premiered and recorded new music playing in numerous festivals across Europe.
Born in Potries (Spain), Ausias studied at Conservatory of Castellón (Spain) before coming to Guildhall in London. He has studied with Juan Esteban Romero, Andrew Webster, Julian Farrell, James Burke and Andrew Marriner, and bass clarinet from Javier Ros, Laurent Ben Slimane and Lorenzo Iosco.
Philip Haworth, Principal Artist, Oboe & English Horn
Philip Haworth has performed with chamber groups in venues across the world including Denmark, Czech Republic, Japan, UK and Germany. Philip is the oboist in the Atéa Wind Quintet who are the Associate Ensemble in Residence at the Birmingham Conservatoire, were Quintet in Residence at the Purcell School and double prize winners in the 2015 Carl Nielsen International Chamber Music Competition. Philip is one of the oboe tutors at the Dartington International Summer School, the Malvern Winds Summer Course as well as the Wind Quintet retreat in Yorkshire. He has recently worked with such orchestras as the Orchestra of Opera North, Hallé Orchestra, Birmingham Contemporary Music Ensemble, London Mozart Players, Orchestra of St Johns and the London Musical Arts Orchestra.
Louise McMonagle, Principal Artist, Cello
London cellist Louise McMonagle is a versatile musician who enjoys performing in many environments. Highlights include performing Boulez Messagesquisse in the Viva Cello Festival (Switzerland), collaborating with Finnish circus performer and choreographer Ilona Jäntti, performances with Ragazze String Quartet (Holland), and recording two studio albums with jazz saxophonist Trish Clowes. Louise has enjoyed playing guest principal cello with the BBC Philharmonic Orchestra, Opera North, Ulster Orchestra, Royal Northern Sinfonia, and freelances regularly with Royal Opera House, Philharmonia, BBC Symphony Orchestra, English National Opera, Aurora Orchestra, and many other groups.
Tim Rutherford Johnson, Writer
Tim Rutherford-Johnson is the author of Music after the Fall: Modern Composition and Culture since 1989. (University of California Press). He is editor of the online magazine Sounds Like Now, edited and updated the 2012 Oxford Dictionary of Music, and blogs about contemporary music at The Rambler.
Goska Isphording, Principal Artist, Harpischord
Polish Harpsichordist Goska Isphording has performed at an array of prestigious festivals and concert halls including Gaudeamus Music Week or November Music, Warsaw Autumn Festival, Gaida Festival, ISCM World Music Days and Huddersfield Contemporary Music Festival.
Pan-European appearances have brought Goska to the attention of a variety of composers, and her inimitable approach to the harpsichord has included over one-hundred solo and chamber music premieres, alongside dedications of harpsichord concerti by Hanna Kulenty, Roderik de Man and Andrzej Kwiecinski. Goska currently teaches contemporary harpsichord techniques at the Amsterdam Conservatoire.
Sarah Mason, Principal Artist, Percussion
Welsh percussionist Sarah Mason has performed internationally as a soloist in venues such as the Royal Albert Hall and the Sydney Opera House, with broadcasts from Classic FM to HTV. As an orchestral musician, she has toured China, Russia, and America with the London Philharmonic Orchestra, recorded Howard Shore’s score for ‘The Hobbit’, appeared on the BBC proms and was streamed live to cinemas across the UK from the Glyndebourne Opera House.
Sarah Saviet, Principal Artist, Violin
Sarah Saviet is an American violinist who lives in Germany. She is a member of the Riot Ensemble (London) and is director of the concert series Sequence in Berlin. She performs frequently with Ensemble Modern, Ensemble Musikfabrik, hand werk, Ensemble Resonanz, and others.
Sarah appears regularly at festivals including Acht Brücken, Donaueschinger Musiktage, HCMF, Gaudeamus Muziekweek, and Ultraschall Berlin. She was recently a resident artist in the composition department of the University of the Arts Berlin, a visiting artist at Harvard University with ELISION ensemble, and has held artist residencies at Aldeburgh Music with composers Lawrence Dunn and Jack Sheen and artist Rowland Hill.
Stephen Upshaw, Principal Artist, Viola; Press and Marketing Director
Since making his concerto debut at 17, violist Stephen Upshaw has won several competitions and played in festivals around the world including IMS Prussia Cove, Lucerne, Wien Modern, Oxford Chamber Music, Musica Nova (Finland), and the Salzburg Chamber Music Festival. A noted interpreter of contemporary music, Stephen recently performed Feldman’s complete “The Viola in My Life” at London’s Cafe Oto and has given numerous national and international premieres with groups such as Ensemble Modern, Klangforum Wien, and Ensemble Proton.
Andrew Connington, Principal Artist, Trombone
Andrew Connington is Principal Trombone with English National Ballet Philharmonic and also freelances with many of the UK’s Symphony, Opera and Ballet orchestras such as the London Philharmonic Orchestra and London Chamber Orchestra; and in theatres in the West End. He has also spent time in the studio recording music for various cd’s and tv adverts and for films such as Zero Dark Thirty and the Hobbit ‘An Unexpected Journey’. As part of the 2012 Cultural Olympics, Andrew was one of the soloists in Birmingham Opera Company’s world premiere of Stockhausen’s Opera Mittwoch aus Licht.
Pétur Jónasson, Principal Artist, Guitars
Pétur Jónasson is a leading performer, curator and researcher in the field of new music. As a soloist, he has given numerous solo performances throughout Europe, North America, Australasia and the Far East, including numerous works written especially for him. Pétur is currently Head of Classical Guitar Studies at the Iceland Academy of the Arts while also an RCM Doctoral Bursary Holder supported by an Ella Carstairs Award. His research topic is memorisation, with a focus on complex contemporary musical material.
Amy Green, Principal Artist, Saxophones
Amy Green is one of the leading saxophonists of her generation. She has won numerous awards and prizes including the Park Lane Group scheme and the Royal College of Music’s coveted Tagore Gold Medal. Amy has given solo recitals at major London venues including the Royal Festival Hall, St Martin in the Fields and St John’s Smith Square, and performed as a soloist in the BBC Proms Plus series broadcast on BBC Radio 3. Alongside the Riot Ensemble, she is the soprano saxophonist in the Laefer Quartet, saxophonist with ANIMA, and has played with the LSO, RPO, BBC Symphony Orchestra, RLPO, Philharmonia, BSO, ENO, and Rambert Dance Company.
Kate Walter, Principal Artist, Flutes
Kate Walter is a founding member and fundraising director of The Riot Ensemble. Kate has a busy freelance orchestral career and has worked with the London Symphony Orchestra, BBC Symphony Orchestra, Philharmonia, Royal Philharmonic Orchestra and Northern Sinfonia.
In the 2009/10 season Kate was Co- Principal Flute of Southbank Sinfonia, London. She currently plays in ‘Les Miserables’ in London’s West End. Kate has toured the UK and Europe extensively giving solo and ensemble recitals, and is a ‘Live Music Now!’ artist.
Sarah Dacey, Principal Artist, Voice; Education Director
Singer Sarah Dacey studied at York University and the Royal Academy of Music. Her career has spanned everything from a cappella singing to session work to opera and she is a member of critically acclaimed Juice Vocal Ensemble, whose last album ‘Snow Queens’ was one of BBC Radio 3’s listening recommendations for 2019. Alongside her work with Riot, she’s performed with the London Contemporary Orchestra, the Gavin Bryars Ensemble, the Octandre Ensemble, Twilight Ensemble, the Heritage Orchestra, the BBC Singers and multi-media groups, Galvanize and SoundKarD. Sarah is a keen composer and arranger and has been broadcast on Radio 3, Radio 4 and BBC 6 Music. She is also a Senior Lecturer at Leeds College of Music and Assistant Lecturer at the University of Kent.
Ruth Rosales, Principal Artist, Bassoon
Ruth Rosales freelances in orchestras in the UK such as the BBC Symphony Orchestra, the Royal Opera House, the Hallé and the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic. She is also an animateur and has presented orchestral concerts for children for the Britten Sinfonia, the Royal Northern Sinfonia, the City of London Sinfonia and Ensemble 360.