Helen Bishop I was born in Wales. I have been a clarinettist with Sinfonia Viva since 2001. I studied at the Welsh College of Music and Drama with Michael Saxton as a Junior student, and then went on to study at the Royal Academy of Music with Georgina Dobree. I returned to the Welsh College for postgraduate study with Martin Ronchetti before attending the National Centre for Orchestral Studies, Goldsmiths College, London. I began my career playing principal and bass clarinet in West End musicals before being drawn towards opera and symphony orchestras. I currently play clarinet and bass clarinet with Welsh National Opera, English Touring Opera, Brighton Philharmonic Orchestra and Bristol Ensemble. I also specialise in playing the basset horn (the clarinet’s big brother), an instrument I feel is rather underrated. I'm currently researching its solo and chamber music repertoire, and hope to promote a greater awareness of the instrument’s unique qualities and true potential. My interest in Welsh clarinet music inspired the composer David Nevens to write a piece for me, “GWYN ap NUDD” for solo E flat clarinet. More recently, a visit to Australia sparked not only an interest in clarinet music by Australian composers but also a taste for red wine by West Australian wine producers. I’m also very passionate about young people being able to have access to music from an early age. I have thoroughly enjoyed taking part in English Touring Opera’s education performances, nationwide and in Luxembourg, for young people and for people with special needs. I find it very rewarding to observe the pleasure that the participants derive at the time and also what they take away with them. In my spare time I enjoy hill walking with my husband and an occasional glass of the afore-mentioned wine.