Since completing an MMus at the Royal College of Music, Susana has been freelancing with UK based Orchestras including the Orchestra of the Royal Opera House, the BBC Symphony, Royal Philharmonic and London Philharmonic Orchestras.
Born in Porto, Portugal, Susana attended the Music Conservatoire where she learnt with Robert Glassburner. In London at the RCM she studied Bassoon with Andrea De Flammineis and Contrabassoon with Martin Field. Alongside her Music studies Susana also gained a degree in Economics at Oporto University in 2003.
Susana was co-winner of the Yamaha Music Foundation Competition for Woodwinds and the RCM Concerto Competition in 2005 which led to a performance of Mozart’s Bassoon Concerto as part of the Mozart 250th Anniversary celebrations at LSO St. Luke’s.
In 2008 Susana was bassoonist with Southbank Sinfonia and as part of this orchestra she performed in high profile concerts including the critically acclaimed revival of Tom Stoppard’s ‘Every Good Boy Deserves Favour’ at The National Theatre.
As a recitalist, Susana has performed in London, Porto and Prague with pianists Hana Fiserova and Yuki Negishi.
Chamber Music has also been an integral part of Susana’s career as bassoonist for London Myriad Ensemble and she has played as a guest performer with Ensemble 360 and the Berkeley Ensemble.
Ashley studied at Leeds University with Laurence Perkins and Ben Hudson, Hochschule für Musik Köln with Georg Kleusch, and then at the Royal Academy of Music with John Orford, Gareth Newmann and contra bassoon with David Chatterton where he completed his studies in 2011. Whilst at the Academy, Ashley was awarded the Nicholas Blake Prize for chamber music and the June Emmerson Launchpad Prize with his ensemble the Ellipsis Quintet, and was highly commended in the Florence Woodbridge Bassoon Prize.
Ashley is the bassoonist of Rare-Scale Contemporary Music Ensemble, Azalea Ensemble and the Size Zero Opera Company as well as performing with the London Contemporary Orchestra, with whom he gave the European premiere of Gabriel Prokoﬁev’s concerto for Bass Drum and Orchestra in The Roundhouse, Camden at the Reverb Festival 2012. He plays with orchestras throughout the UK including Orpheus Sinfonia, Orion Orchestra, The Croft Orchestra, London Contemporary Orchestra, Multi-Story Orchestra and the Faust Ensemble. He has performed at venues throughout the UK including the Royal Festival Hall, Queen Elizabeth Hall, Wigmore Hall, Bridgewater Hall, Cadogan Hall, the Royal Albert Hall, Leeds Town Hall, Kings Place, Dora Stoutzker Hall – RWCMD, Dukes Hall – RAM and The Forge – Camden. This year he played bassoon with the Jules Verne Symphony Orchestra on the Rick Wakeman ‘Journey to the Centre of the Earth’ tour as well as with the Orion Orchestra with Deep Purple at the ‘Sunﬂower Jam’, Royal Albert Hall.
Ashley is involved in numerous chamber music ventures throughout the UK and abroad, and is also a regular member of the ‘Atéa Quintet’ who are currently “Associate Ensemble in Residence” at the Birmingham Conservatoire.
He has worked on a number of music education projects, including Wigmore Hall Learning, ‘Young Persons Guide to Chamber Music’, and last year a concert presentation to pupils at the Prague Japanese School as part of the ‘Young Prague Music Festival’. He teaches bassoon at Whitgift School Croydon.
Half English and half Venezuelan, Ruth grew up in the Lake District. Ruth's passion for music became evident at school where she sang and played piano and later began to focus on the bassoon. She won a scholarship to study bassoon at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama, including a year on the Erasmus scheme in Hamburg Germany and finishing with a Bachelor and Masters of Music. Upon leaving music college, she joined the Southbank Sinfonia Orchestra and now enjoys a freelance career working in orchestras in the UK including the Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra, BBC Symphony Orchestra, the London Chamber Orchestra, the London Concert Orchestra, the London Symphony Orchestra, Opera North, the Philharmonia, Orchestra of the Royal Opera House, the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra, and the Ulster Orchestra. She was also on trial with the Royal Ballet Sinfonia and the Royal Scottish National Orchestra.
Ruth is also an animateur and was chosen as a Spitalfields Music Animateur Trainee last year. She has presented orchestral concerts for the Multi Storey Orchestra, and the Southbank Sinfonia, and has assisted and led workshops for the Brillig Ensemble, the Bath Phil, Southbank Sinfonia, and at the Wigmore Hall.