String Experience

Established in 1992, the LSO String Experience scheme enables young string players at the start of their professional careers to gain work experience by playing in rehearsals and concerts with the LSO.

The scheme auditions students from the London music conservatoires: Royal Academy of Music, Royal College of Music, Guildhall School of Music & Drama, and Trinity Laban College of Music and Dance, and 15 students per year are selected to participate in the scheme. Participants are treated as professional 'extra' players (additional to LSO members) and receive fees for their work in line with LSO section players. The scheme presents an invaluable opportunity to tap into the knowledge of the LSO musicians and make long-lasting contacts.

String Experience 2016/17

2016/17 String Experience students, mentors and staff

Player Mentors

Maxine Kwok-Adams (first violins)
Sarah Quinn (second violins)
Robert Turner (violas)
Hilary Jones (cellos)
Tom Goodman (double basses)

2016/17 Participants

Naoka Aoki (Royal Academy of Music)
Emmanuel Bach (Royal College of Music)
Rosa Hartley (Royal College of Music)
Andre Gaio Pereira (Royal Academy of Music)
Lyrit Milgram (Guildhall School)
Jin Wook Suk (Royal Academy of Music)

Ting-Ru Lai (Guildhall School)
Zhenwei Shi (Royal Academy of Music)
Sofia Silva Sousa (Royal Academy of Music)

Margarita Balanas (Royal Academy of Music)
Yaroslava Trofymchuk (Royal College of Music)
Jingzhuo Zhang (Royal Academy of Music)

Emre Ersahin (Royal Academy of Music)
Salvador Morera Ortells (Royal Academy of Music)
Jose Moreira (Guildhall School)

How to apply

If you are a string player at a London music college, please speak to a member of your faculty staff.

Auditions for 2017/18 will take place at the start of the autumn 2017 term following coaching sessions with LSO musicians to help with certain aspects of the audition repertoire.

LSO String Experience Scheme is supported by Help Musicians UK, Fidelio Charitable Trust, N Smith Charitable Settlement and LSO Patrons.

Love Music Help Musicians U   


Orchestral Artistry

Part of MusM/MPerf in Performance (Guildhall Artist Masters)

Orchestral Artistry is an exciting professional specialism for instrumentalists seeking a career in orchestral playing, reflecting what it is to be a 21st century musician.

Part of the Guildhall Artist Masters programme, it offers a course of study which is both highly distinctive and ground-breaking in its scope, in a context akin to a professional environment.

The aim of the programme is to produce fully-rounded, excellent players who have acquired the professional and entrepreneurial skills, knowledge and capability to become high achieving 21st century musicians.

As part of the programme, students receive individual tuition from the Guildhall School’s professors or an LSO player who is also a Guildhall professor.

'Getting to work with someone like Sir Simon Rattle – who you see at the Proms, who’s always in the news, and is such a huge figure in classical music; that’s an incredible opportunity that I never would have had if I hadn’t been on this course.'

Rosie Bowker, Orchestral Artistry flute

They can also participate in:

  • Orchestral training, sectionals and audition training from Guildhall professors and a variety of LSO players
  • Masterclasses and chamber coachings, either as an observer or a performer, with a variety of LSO players and guest artists, plus Artist Conversations with the LSO’s international guest artists
  • LSO Schools and Family concerts, either as an observer or a performer
  • Education and community projects alongside LSO players, including coaching younger musicians
  • Privileged access to LSO rehearsals.

In addition, the Barbican International Associates (Concertgebouw Orchestra, Leipzig Gewandhaus Orchestra and Los Angeles Philharmonic, among others) each undertake biennial residencies at the School. Their musicians deliver a number of masterclasses throughout the year.

Performance opportunities

'When you play next to the wonderful players from LSO, you learn all the time, and everything they do, you try to bring to your own playing. The opportunities I’ve had so far have taught me so much.'

Oskari Hanhikoshi, Orchestral Artistry double bass

Performance opportunities on this course embrace a variety of orchestral contexts, including Guildhall Symphony Orchestra concerts in the Barbican, and the Opera orchestra for productions by the School’s acclaimed Opera department. Recent visiting conductors have included the LSO’s Music Director designate Sir Simon Rattle, as well as Sir Antonio Pappano and Bernard Haitink. There is a full programme of chamber music, new music, historically-informed performance and interdisciplinary practice. A diverse programme of core and elective modules from the Guildhall Artist Masters programme enable students to further develop skills in practical subjects and research.

Find out more and apply

Visit for further information and to apply.

LSO Academy

Each year the LSO Academy provides up to 30 promising young instrumentalists aged 14–24 with a unique opportunity to work with the great orchestral musicians of their time in a week of orchestral-focused workshops and masterclasses at LSO St Luke’s.

The LSO Academy focuses on a different section of the orchestra each year. Future Academies will take place as follows:
2018: Strings
2019: Woodwind
2020: Brass

2017 Academy: Timpani and Percussion

The 2017 Academy will take place at LSO St Luke's on 15–19 July 2017.

The course will be directed by Principal Percussionist Neil Percy, Co-Principal Percussionist Sam Walton, and Principal Timpanist Nigel Thomas. The Academy tutors will guide students through an inspirational week of specialist masterclasses and intensive orchestral repertoire sessions, alongside workshops to explore ensemble performance in fresh and exciting ways.

> Buy tickets for the Showcase concert on Wednesday 19 July

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Meet the LSO Academy 2017 mentors

2016 Academy: Brass

The 2016 Academy took place at LSO St Luke's in London from Friday 15–Tuesday 19 July 2016.

Coached by Tim Jones (Principal Horn), Alex Edmundson (Co-Principal Horn), Philip Cobb (Principal Trumpet), Dudley Bright (Principal Trombone), Peter Moore (Co-Principal Trombone) and Patrick Harrild (Principal Tuba), the participants took part in a range of activities including masterclasses, orchestral repertoire coaching and chamber ensemble group work.

The Academy culminated in a public evening concert at LSO St Luke’s on Tuesday 19 July in which the students and tutors showcased the ensemble highlights from the week.

Photos © Kevin Leighton

LSO Academy is generously supported by:


Love Music Help Musicians U

bell music logo 90

Angus Allnatt Charitable Foundation
David HS Hobbs
FTSE Russell in memory of David Hobbs
Derek Hill Foundation
Rod Stafford

Panufnik Composers Scheme

The Panufnik Composers Scheme is an exciting initiative offering six emerging composers each year the opportunity to write for a world-class symphony orchestra.

It has been devised by the Orchestra in association with Lady Panufnik in memory of her late husband, the composer Sir Andrzej Panufnik, and is generously supported by Lady Hamlyn and the Helen Hamlyn Trust

Under the guidance of renowned composer Colin Matthews, the scheme enables composers to experiment over time and develop their orchestral writing skills. Composers form collaborative musical relationships with LSO players as well as having their compositions put under the microscope by the LSO and François-Xavier Roth in a public workshop rehearsal – a major learning curve.

2017 Composers Announced

We are delighted to announced that the following composers have been selected to take part in the 2017 Panufnik Composers Scheme:

James Hoyle
Grace-Evangeline Mason
Sophya Polevaya
Emma Wilde
Alexander Woolf
Han Xu

Congratulations to all six composers.

panufnik 2017

2016 scheme

Benjamin Ashby, Amy Bryce, Gonçalo Gato, Daniel Kidane, Liam Mattison and Donghoon Shin are took part in the 2016 Panufnik Composers Scheme.

The 2016 scheme culminated with a public workshop on 20 April 2017 during which the new three-minute works were rehearsed by François-Xavier Roth and the London Symphony Orchestra at LSO St Luke’s.

After the workshop it was announced that Donghoon Shin was awarded the 10-minute commission and Liam Mattison was awarded the five-minute commission.

Current and Previous participants

2017: James Hoyle, Grace-Evangeline Mason, Sophya Polevaya, Emma Wilde, Alexander Woolf, Han Xu
2016: Benjamin Ashby, Amy Bryce, Gonçalo Gato, Daniel Kidane, Liam Mattison~, Donghoon Shin*
2015: Patrick Giguère~, Deborah Pritchard, Daniel Moreira, Daniel-Lewis Fardon, Bethan Morgan-Williams, Ewan Campbell*
: Michael Cryne, Michael Cutting, Vitalija Glovacytė, Alex Roth, Jack Sheen*, Michael Taplin~
2013: Kim Ashton, Benjamin Graves, Jae-Moon Lee, James Moriarty~, Elizabeth Ogonek*, Richard Whalley
2012: Patrick Brennan~, Leo Chadburn, David Coonan, Bushra El-Turk, Ryan Latimer, Aaron Parker*
2011: Matthew Kaner*, Michael Langemann, Joanna Lee, Alastair Putt~, Duncan Ward, Mihyun Woo
2010: Nancie Eloise Gynn~, Cevanne Horrocks-Hopayian, Christopher Mayo, Edward Nesbit*, Dan Stern, Elizabeth Winters~
2009: Edmund Finnis, Francisco Coll Garcia~, Fung Lam, Vlad Maistorovici*, Max de Wardener^, Toby Young
2008: Andrew McCormack*, Joshua Penduck, Matthew Sargeant, Sasha Siem+, Ayanna Witter-Johnson, Raymond Yiu^
2007: Elspeth Brooke, Emily Howard+, Tom Lane, Charlie Piper*, Evis Sammoutis, Anjula Semmens
2006: Larry Goves, Emily Hall+, Christian Mason+^, Matthew Rogers, Martin Suckling+, Jason Yarde*+
2005 (pilot): Daniel Basford, John Douglas Templeton, Philip Venables

*10-minute commission
~5-minute commission
+UBS Soundscapes: Pioneers Commission
^LSO Artist Commission (commissioned to write a piece for a visiting artist or artists for performance in LSO concerts at the Barbican or LSO St Luke’s. Artists have included Midori, Lang Lang and the Silk Strings and Hugh Masekela)

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A decade of the Panufnik Composers Scheme: where are they now?
Part I | Part II


'My composer husband, Andrzej Panufnik, received three commissions and recorded most of his symphonic music with the LSO. He worried about how young composers could nowadays attain essential experience with highest level orchestras: this project fulfils his dream.'
Lady Panufnik


Each year two composers from the years' intake are commissioned to write an additional 10-minute or 5-minute commission, to be played by the LSO at a main-stage LSO concert at the Barbican. We are proud of the pantheon of works produced as a result of this scheme since 2007:

10-minute commissions:
Donghoon Shin title tbc (world premiere tbc)
Ewan Campbell title tbc (world premiere 25 March 2018)
Jack Sheen Lung (world premiere 25 September 2016)
Elizabeth Ogonek Sleep & Unremembrance (world premiere 13 March 2016)
Aaron Parker 51°58’N/1°19’E-300514 (world premiere 18 December 2014)
Matthew Kaner The Calligrapher's Manuscript (world premiere 19 September 2013)
Edward Nesbit Parallels (world premiere 29 November 2012)
Vlad Maistorovici Halo (world premiere 13 March 2011)
Andrew McCormack Incentive (world premiere 10 December 2009)
Charlie Piper The Twittering Machine (world premiere 26 October 2008)
Jason Yarde All Souls Seek Joy (world premiere 28 November 2007

5 minute commissions:
Liam Mattison title tbc (world premiere tbc)
Patrick Giguère title tbc (world premiere 15 April 2018)
Michael Taplin Ebbing Tides (world premiere 14 December 2016)
James Moriarty Windows (world premiere 6 December 2015)
Patrick Brennan Ballabile (world premiere 5 February 2015)
Alastair Putt Spiral (world premiere 12 June 2014)
Eloise Nancie Gynn Anahata (world premiere 24 March 2012)
Francisco Coll Hidd'n Blue (world premiere 15 January 2012)


Generously supported by Lady Hamlyn and the Helen Hamlyn Trust

Helen-Hamlyn-Trust 50

LSO Soundhub

A platform for emerging composers

Based at LSO St Luke’s, LSO Soundhub provides a flexible environment where composers can explore, collaborate and experiment, with access to vital resources, support from industry professionals and LSO members and staff.

Soundhub is a composer-led resource, responding directly to the needs of those using it: a supportive framework for artists to try out new ideas, develop existing work and benefit from peer-to-peer networking and support.

The programme is open to UK-based composers and builds on the LSO’s ongoing investment in emerging talent, in particular through the Panufnik Composers Scheme.

LSO Soundhub is generously supported by Susie Thomson.

Applications for September 2017

Applications for new Soundhub Members and Associates are now closed.

Four new Members will be offered the opportunity to undertake projects with LSO musicians or independently, membership being for one year from September 2017 initially.


  • Soundhub is open to UK-based early-career composers who create music in any medium and who demonstrate an active interest in, and some experience of, working with classical musicians.
  • All candidates must be either British national, studying in the UK or resident in the UK for at least three years and at least 18 years of age by September 2017.
  • Previous Soundhub Members cannot reapply for Soundhub Membership (individuals or collectives) but may reapply for Associate membership
  • There is no upper age restriction, so if composers feel this offers a development opportunity then they are encouraged to apply
  • It is possible to apply both to this programme and for Jerwood Composer+ membership, if eligible, but if selected you may only participate in one, at LSO’s discretion


Up to four composers will be accepted as Members, and each undertake an initial project at LSO St Luke’s either with a small group of LSO players, or an independent project for which space and other resources are provided. Each member is also allocated a mentor to support them as they develop their project.

The aim is to provide members with an opportunity to explore and develop their practice. These projects do not necessarily need to result in a finished product; the focus is on demonstrating learning and development through the creative process.


The Soundhub Community is also extended to a wider group of Associates, who along with the Members, benefit from access to Soundhub events at LSO St Luke’s, LSO rehearsals and concerts, plus occasional access to space and other resources. This year we have 84 Associate composers.

Yasmeen Ahmed
Robert Allan
Kim Ashton
Laurie Bamon
Joel Bell
Michael Betteridge
Darren Bloom
Maxim Boon
Elspeth Brooke
Alex Brusentsev
Richard Bullen
Ewan Campbell
Leo Chadburn
David Coonan
Tom Coult
Ninfea Cruttwell-Reade
Michael Cryne
Michael Cutting
Bushra El-Turk
Gregory Emfietzis
Daniel-Lewis Fardon
Diego Garcia
Ben Gaunt
Patrick Giguere
Vitalija Glovackyte
Pedro Faria Gomes
Cameron Graham
Benjamin Graves
Alex Groves
  Eloise Gynn
Robin Haigh
Richard Hames
Alex Hawkins
Joss Holden-Rea
Aaron Holloway-Nahum
Cevanne Horrocks-Hopayian
Dani Howard
Jordan Hunt
Alice Jeffreys
Rob Jones
Daniel Kidane
Michael Langemann
Chad Langford
Jae-Moon Lee
Luke Lewis
Igor Maia
Brian Mark
Chris McCormack
Camilo Mendez
Gareth Moorcraft
Daniel Moreira
Bethan Morgan-Williams
James Moriarty
Nicholas Moroz
Blair Mowat
Elizabeth Ogonek
  Laurence Osborn
Helen Papaioannou
Aaron Parker
Andra Patterson
James Pickering
Deborah Pritchard
Alastair Putt
Emma-Ruth Richards
Alex Roth
Roberto David Rusconi
Daniel Saleeb
Marisa Sharon Hartanto
Jack Sheen
Donghoon Shin
Neil Smith
Robert Szymanek
Michael Taplin
Piers Tattersall
Jacob Thompson-Bell
Laurence Tompkins
Philip Venables
James Welland
Richard Whalley
Ayanna Witter-Johnson
Jason Yarde
Toby Young
Na'ama Zisser


Playlist: Soundhub Associates Showcase, May 2017 // featuring works by Rob Jones, Alex Roth, Bethan Morgan-Williams, Brian Mark, Daniel Fardon and Chris McCormack.


LSO Soundhub is generously supported by Susie Thomson.  

Khadambi's House: Composer in Residence

575 Wandsworth Road

In 2015 the London Symphony Orchestra launched a Composer in Residence scheme which brought together and celebrated the creative work of the late Kenyan-born poet, novelist, philosopher of mathematics and British civil servant, Khadambi Asalache (28 February 1935 – 26 May 2006) alongside the work of one of today’s leading emerging composers, Cevanne Horrocks-Hopayian. The Residency was at the house of Asalache in Wandsworth, South London, now a National Trust property.

LSO Patron, Susie Thomson, had long wanted to have a composer work at 575 Wandsworth Road, the house she shared with her partner, Khadambi Asalache.

Khadambi bought the house in 1981 and over a period of 20 years (from 1986) turned his home into a work of art. Prompted by the need to disguise persistent damp in the basement dining room, he initially fixed pine floorboards to the damp wall. He went on to embellish almost every wall, ceiling and door in the house with exquisite fretwork patterns and motifs, which he hand-carved from reclaimed pine doors and floorboards found in skips. The property is now owned by the National Trust.

The Residency

The residency was a new initiative which brought together and celebrated the creative work of Khadambi Asalache alongside one of today’s leading emerging composers. Cevanne Horrocks-Hopayian, an alumnus of the LSO Panufnik Scheme and current LSO Soundhub associate, used her two-year residency to work with LSO musicians to meaningfully interpret the history of the house and the exquisite work of Asalache.

Workshops engaged local communities and brought a new perspective on the house. Members of the local community were be invited to attend these workshops with Cevanne and LSO musicians during the first year of the residency. Cevanne used materials created in these workshops, and her engagement with LSO musicians, to develop a piece of music, a commission premiered at the end of her residency. Cevanne will also created a sensory ‘instrument’ based on her explorations during the two years to be used in the commission.

The Composer-in-Residence scheme at Khadambi’s House is an LSO Soundhub project. Generous support has been provided by Khadambi Asalache’s partner, Susie Thomson. We are also grateful to the National Trust, a partner in this project.

The National Trust


Cevanne Horrocks-Hopayian

Cevanne Horrocks-Hopayian logo

Cevanne is a daring Anglo-Armenian composer, singer & harper from Suffolk. Her music digs deep into the rich soil of the British Isles and is inspired by styles of all kinds – from Renaissance to Maqam.

She has balanced a diverse portfolio of commissions and projects, ranging from the LSO’s Panufnik Scheme, a Celtic harp duo with Ruth Wall (Goldfrapp) for BBC Radio 3, and a bi-lingual play for Swedish National Radio. Premières featured actor Jessica Hynes, MOBO-winner Zoe Rahman, roboticist Sarah Angliss, Oren Marshall, & Manu Delago. She has completed a successful residency at Handel House and begins a new one with the LSO & National Trust at the fretwork house of Khadambi Asalache (until 2017).



Sunday 26 April 2015
18 singers from the Armenian community in London worked with Cevanne and musicians from the LSO. Violinist Levon Chilingirian and actor Seta White also contributed.

Saturday 9 May 2015
18 participants from the Festival Chorus Wandsworth worked with Cevanne and musicians from the LSO.

Saturday 19 September 2015
Six young adults from the LSO Digital Technology Group worked with Cevanne and LSO musicians to create a soundpiece using inspiration from the resonances in Khadambi’s House. They also experimented with the new electronic instrument in its early stages.

Saturday 28 November 2015
A public event, presented by Cevanne and including LSO musicians, showcased everything that was created and recorded during the first year.

Inkwells: live on YouTube

In October 2016 we presented a special online performance of Cevanne's Inkwells, recorded at Khadambi's House. The performance was followed by a live Q&A with presenter Rachel Leach and violinist Tom Norris.

Watch the performance and Q&A below:

LSO Jerwood Composer+

LSO Jerwood Composer+ is a new programme that will support early career composers in programming, planning and delivering chamber-scale concerts in the Jerwood Hall at LSO St Luke’s, including work of their own developed through the programme.

Two composers will be accepted onto the LSO Jerwood Composer+ programme each year for a 16-month placement with the LSO. The composers will each be given the opportunity to programme, plan and deliver two concerts at the Jerwood Hall at LSO St Luke’s, enabling them to showcase new music by both themselves and other composers whilst gaining entrepreneurial skills through mentoring from key LSO staff. The concerts will make a substantial contribution to the diversity of the music programme for audiences at LSO St Luke’s.

Applications for September 2017

Applications are now closed.

LSO Jerwood Composer+ will support two composers in planning and running two concerts each in the Jerwood Hall at LSO St Luke’s, including work of their own developed through the programme.


  • LSO Jerwood Composer+ is open to UK-based early-career composers from all musical backgrounds
  • Composers studying full time are not eligible for the LSO Jerwood Composer+ scheme due to the time commitment required for this programme
  • All candidates must be either British national, studying in the UK (if part time) or resident in the UK for at least three years.
  • There is no upper age restriction, so if composers feel this offers a development opportunity then they are encouraged to apply
  • Current or previous Soundhub Associates and Members may apply to the LSO Jerwood Composer+ scheme
  • LSO Jerwood Composer+ composers will also become Soundhub Associates at the start of their acceptance on the 16 month scheme
  • It is possible to apply both to this programme and for Soundhub membership, if eligible, but if selected you may only participate in one, at LSO’s discretion


The programme will provide:

  • the opportunity to plan and deliver showcase concerts at LSO St Luke’s, giving participating composers creative freedom to explore classical and/or cross-genre collaborations and unconventional concert formats and timings to appeal to target audiences
  • support in developing showcase concerts through a bespoke programme of mentoring from key LSO staff, to build skills and experience in programming, event planning, budgeting, marketing, fundraising and evaluation
  • access to LSO composition workshops and masterclasses with established composers and LSO musicians
  • access to the facilities at LSO St Luke’s
  • mentoring from an established external music sector professional, such as a composition teacher, festival promoter, or media specialist

Applications are invited from exceptional early-career composers of any musical background who would like to gain entrepreneurial skills to support their professional development, work with world-class orchestral musicians and contribute to the concert programme for audiences at LSO St Luke’s. We particularly welcome applications from underrepresented groups. Applicants may not be in full time formal education or training.


Jerwood Composer+ is generously supported by Jerwood Charitable Foundation

Jerwood Charitable Foundation