The Musicians who Teach at Studio Forcada

Dr. Claudio Forcada

Dr. Claudio Forcada was born in Spain, and holds a PhD from Birmingham City University on a thesis on efficacy in violin teaching. He is also fully qualified Suzuki teacher by ESA (European Suzuki Association), has completed trainings on the “New Approach” with Kato Havas in Oxford (UK), on Rolland’s pedagogy with Nancy Kredel, Lynne Denig and Mary Rich among others in Hamburg (Germany) and Virginia (USA), and has undertaken trainings on violin pedagogy with Mimi Zweig at Indiana University (USA).
From 1993 to 2006 he taught the violin, chamber music and orchestra at Conservatoires and music schools in Spain. In 2001, he was selected by the Galician Government to elaborate the syllabus of the highest musical degree.
From 2000 to 2003 he was the director of the “Summer Music School of Oleiros” (Galicia County, Spain). From 2000 to 2004, Claudio was the director of the “Seminar on Violin Pedagogy. Caixa Galicia” and, from 2004 to 2006 Artistic director of “The Edartmus International Summer Music School”.
From 2000 to 2004 he was the head teacher at the music school in Oleiros (La Coruña, Spain) and in 2005 he was appointed deputy head at the “Conservatorio Superior” (College of Music) also in La Coruña.
From 1988 he has played in several professional groups, such as: ‘Orquesta Ciudad de Córdoba’, ‘Orquesta Joaquín Turina’, ‘Orquesta de Cámara Gallega’, ‘Phantasy Quartet’, ‘Spanish Quartet’, ‘Tactum Ensemble’ and ‘Altissimo Ensemble’ (whose presentation at the Royal Festival Hall in 2009 followed the release of the CD ‘San Gejtanu’ with works by Ian Stewart).
Since 2007 Claudio is settled in London and he regularly gives and organizes lectures and teacher trainings on violin pedagogy and instrumental teaching as well as workshops for children at universities, conservatoires and music schools in Iceland, Japan, Germany, Austria, El Salvador, Ireland, Spain, Italy, France, Scotland, Wales and England (Institute of Education –London-, Birmingham City University –UK-, Alcala de Henares University –Madrid-, ‘Escuela Superior de Musica de Catalunya’ –Barcelona-, Universidad Don Bosco -El Salvador-, Reijoku University -Kyoto, Japan- and Bangor University –Wales-, among others).
In 2009, he was appointed consultant at VIU (Valencian International University, Spain), where he teaches string pedagogy, music education and research. He has also published three handbooks on the abovementioned subjects and filmed six documentaries on String pedagogy, music education and music psychology.
In 2012, Claudio was awarded with the “Ernest Newman Price” at the Birmingham City University, for a lecture on “Motor Learning and Violin Teaching”. In 2013, Claudio was teaching violin and string pedagogy at a program organised by ‘Universidad Don Bosco’ and the ‘Edytra Fundation’ in El Salvador, and he was honoured with a recognition from the president at the Legislative Assembly in El Salvador for his contribution to the musical education of the country. This recognition took place at the legislative assembly where Claudio performed at a concert broadcasted to the whole country. In October 2013 Claudio gave a lecture at the prestigious “International Webinar for Professional Development in the Arts” broadcasted to universities from USA, Canada, Mexico, UK and Cyprus, such as University of Cambridge, Chihuahua University, Benedictine University and the Institute of Education in London, among others. In 2015, Claudio has given a lecture on “Good violin teaching: Psychologial aspects related to the acquisition of motor skills” at the International Symposium on Performance Science in Kyoto (Japan).
At present, and besides his responsibilities at the Valencian International University, Claudio is the director of the ‘Scherzo workshop’ and the ‘Seminar for String Teachers’ (both in London), ‘Music in Progress’ (a workshop for string teachers and students in France) and leads his own string project in North London.

Dr. Claudio Forcada

Melinda Miguel BMus (Hon). MMus.
Cello, piano.

Melinda Miguel began her musical studies at the age of six with her grandfather Raymond Andrés, studying piano, cello, harmony, and counterpoint. Aged seventeen, she graduated from both instruments at the ‘Conservatori del Liceu de Barcelona’ and then moved to The Netherlands, were she obtained the Bachelor and Postgraduate Diplomas at the ‘Rotterdams Conservatorium, CODARTS hogeschool voor de kunsten’, with cellists Herre Jan Stegenga and Ad van Dongen. She later studied at the Sibelius Academy in Helsinki, Finland, with professor Martti Roussi. Interested in musicology and in research, Melinda moved to London where she studied at the Royal Academy of Music with professors Mats Lidström and Jeniffer Ward Clarke (baroque cello), being awarded the ‘Master in Performance and Research’ with Distinction. Specialized in different music styles: classical, baroque and Argentinean Tango; Melinda recently wrote a method which is being published on the performance practices traditions in tango music.

She received masterclasses from Steven Isserlis, David Geringas, Robert Cohen, Anner Bylsma, Susan Monks, Colin Carr, Badke String Quartet, Vermeer Quartet, Jerusalem Quartet, Thomas Brandis, Shmuel Ashkenasi, Jeremy Menuhin, among others. Melinda performed in many orchestras and chamber music ensembles like the London Sinfonietta, and the Ensemble Iberoamericano, and is regularly invited to perform as soloist, having recently performed the Triple Concerto of Beethoven and the Schumann Cello Concerto in Mexico, The Netherlands and Spain. Melinda teaches cello in several primary and secondary schools in the London area and is an experienced Suzuki cello teacher, often participating at international workshops and summer camps.

Melinda Miguel

Melinda Miguel. Cello teacher at Studio Forcada

Holly Cullen-Davies BMus (Hon). MMus
Piano/ Musicianship

My aim, through my role as performer, teacher, curator and workshop leader is to bring happiness through music.
My own musical journey began with bedtime songs. My dad sung me to sleep with songs by Cole Porter, The Beatles and Billie Holiday to name but a few. Therefore when I came to the piano age six starting with Bach and Mozart I already had a pretty eclectic taste in music. My mum’s joint love of classical, jazz and folk music meant I attended a lot of very different gigs.
I started piano lessons with the amazing Kasia Borowiak (and a lot of help from my mum) with whom I continued to study at The Junior Guildhall from the age of 10. I went on to study in France at the CNR de Lyon with Hervé Billaut. I then did an undergraduate with Carol Presland on Manchester’s Joint Course with The Royal Northern College of Music where I was recipient of the Dora Gilson Scholarship and winner of the RNCM Bach Prize. I finished my performance training with a Masters at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama taking lessons with Charles Owen, Martin Roscoe and Paul Roberts.
As a soloist and chamber musician I have performed all over the U.K., venues including King’s Place, The Royal Festival Hall, Wigmore Hall, St. John’s Smith Square, The Vortex, Cecil Sharp House and Plush Festival, Dorset.
Determined that music should not be pigeonholed in to genres and passionate about making classical music more accessible to everyone I enjoy collaborating with musicians from all backgrounds and use my skills as vocalist and more rarely clarinettist also to play in many different styles. These ventures have lead to my founding several concert series including Live Junction for which we recently won an Emerging Excellence Award from Help Musician’s UK.

Holly Cullen-Davies

Holly Cullen-Davies

Irene Ramos Professional teaching diploma

Irene Ramos started her musical adventure at the age of nine at the Conservatory of Cádiz (Spain), where she got the Professional Music Diploma with a specialization in Violin.
From 2000 to 2010 she was a member of the “Young Chamber Orchestra of Jerez, Maestro Álvarez Beigbeder”, conducted by the prestigious violist and member of the Royal Symphony Orchestra of Sevilla, Artchil Pochkua. This orchestra performed in numerous concerts around Spain and participated in two international festivals for young orchestras both in Spain (International Festival of Murcia) and France (Eurochestries). It was also rewarded the Young Andalucia and Initiative Price and recorded a compact disc on the occasion of 250 Mozart’s Birth Anniversary. Irene has collaborated with other orchestras such as “Orquesta Ciudad de Ceuta”, “Women Orchestra of Madrid”, “Young Orchestra of Madrid” (JORCAM), “Orquesta del Aljarafe” (Sevilla), among others.
In between, she has worked as a violin teacher in different schools of music, such as the “Music School Soto del Real” (Madrid, Spain), “Arts Academy” (London) and the “Music School School D’Arezzo” (Cádiz, Spain), performing didactic concerts with other members of the teaching staff in Primary Schools, to encourage children to appreciate Classical Music and instrumental practice.
In addition, Irene has completed her training attending numerous workshops and masterclasses on performance and pedagogy, such as the “III course of Music and Strings” (Avilés, Spain), where she received lessons from Alexander Detisov (concertmaster of the “Orquesta de Radio-Televisión Española”), and Music in Progress, directed by the Pedagogue and Violin Teacher Dr. Claudio Forcada.

Nancy Grace Borrett BA(HONS), PG Cert, Level 1-4 Suzuki Teacher

Nancy Grace Borrett began her violin training at the age of four, studying under Andreas Nicolaou. Aged eight her family moved to the Isle of Wight where she obtained sponsorship from the Wight link Ferry company, to continue her weekly studies in Kent. Nancy went on to win various music awards in the South of England, which included playing at the Royal Festival Hall and the Purcell Room.
From sixteen Nancy studied at Colchester Institute under Mark Messenger and Beth Spendlove, winning the Chamber Music Prize and the Solo String Prize. Whilst leading both the Camber Orchestra and the Symphony Orchestra. During this time she had the privilege of performing with The Academy of St Martins in the Field under Sir Neville Marriner and playing on BBC Radio 4. Nancy also continued with her love of singing as her second instrument, performing in Jazz, chamber, opera and gospel groups. Throughout this time Nancy played in various student and professional concerts across East Anglia.
After graduating her Music Degree Nancy embarked on her Suzuki Teacher Training, whilst gaining a place at Birmingham Conservatoire under her Royal Academy teacher Nicholas Miller. It was here she found a love for folk, jazz, bollywood and klezmer music, alongside her classical studies. This led her to play in Bollywood music videos and in Birmingham Jazz Orchestra. She was able to go on tour with Birmingham Conservatoire Folk Ensemble lead by Joe Broughton and folk group The Bonfire Radicals, playing in various gigs across the country. Including Birmingham Symphony Hall and with Julian Lloyd Webber at Birmingham Town Hall. She continued her classical Post Graduate studies under Nicholas Fallowfield, before graduating.
Nancy continued her Suzuki Teacher Training under Heather Clemson whilst teaching as part of the Birmingham Music Service, The Heart of England Suzuki Group and Birmingham Conservatoire Junior Department. It was at this time Nancy travelled to Japan with the British Suzuki Association to attend the Matsumoto Summer School and was given the chance to play on Dr. Suzuki’s violin!
Since moving to London Nancy has qualified as a Level 1 Music Mind Games teacher under Michiko Yurko. She teaches as part of the Suzuki in Schools project and at the Suzuki Hub. Nancy has taught on various workshops throughout England and Europe including France, Spain and Holland. Some of her articles on ‘The importance of review’ and ‘Helping parents practice’ have been published in the Suzuki Magazine, ‘Ability.’