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Andrew Mason

Andrew studied at the Royal College of Music as a Foundation Scholar, winning the Frederick Thurston Clarinet Prize and the Roger Fallows Memorial Prize.


He has performed on Radio Three for the BBC Proms Composer Portrait series and in 2002 made his Purcell Room debut for the Park Lane Group's New Year series for which The Times praised his "subtle virtuosity.......mercurial responses and reactions". In March 2003 he made his Wigmore Hall debut.


With his wind quintet, The Aurora Ensemble, he has performed in Cardiff's St. David's Hall, the Purcell Room, the Wigmore Hall, the Bridgewater Hall and for BBC Radio Three; festival appearances include the Rye, Lincoln and Petworth Festivals. The Auroras were prize winners at the European Chamber Music Competition, Musique d'Ensemble 2001, held at the Paris Conservatoire. "The excellent Aurora Ensemble played......with dazzling precision and infectious wit....These players are a superb team, brilliantly accomplished and I long to hear more of them..." Financial Times.

Andrew has played for the London Philharmonic Orchestra, Northern Sinfonia and the BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra amongst others. In 2013 he was appointed co principal clarinet of Opera North.

Colin Honour

Colin studied at the Royal Academy of Music, London with John Davies, Richard Addison and Anthony Pay. Whilst there, he performed many concertos and was awarded the coveted Geoffrey Hawkes Prize. Colin continued his studies at the National Centre for Orchestral Studies, before embarking on a freelance career, specialising in contemporary and experimental music.

In 1988, he was awarded the prestigious Kranichsteiner Musikpreis at the Darmstadt Contemporary Music Festival, for his solo and chamber music performances. He has subsequently been invited to perform numerous World Premieres and concertos.

Colin held the position of Principal Clarinet in the Orchestra of Opera North, from  1989 until 2020. He appeared as soloist with that orchestra, and others, on many occasions. He continues to enjoy a busy musical life as a soloist, chamber musician and teacher.

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Sarah Masters

Originally from New Zealand, Sarah came to the UK in 2002 to embark on postgraduate studies at the Royal Northern College of Music in Manchester, where she subsequently graduated with an MMus and PGDip, as well as the prestigious PPRNCM Diploma in Chamber Music with wind quintet, Ensemble 23.2. She was awarded first prize in the Gilbert/Fell Solo Woodwind Competition and also won the Granada Chamber Music Prize with the Akoka Quartet, performing Messiaen's Quatuor pour la fin du temps, a piece she has since performed many times in both the UK and New Zealand.

Sarah enjoys a busy and varied freelancing career, performing with many of the UK's professional orchestras including the Halle, BBC Philharmonic, Opera North, Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra, Ulster Orchestra and the Royal Northern Sinfonia. She has performed in concert halls across the UK, Europe and Australasia, recent highlights including a number of performances in the BBC Proms at the Royal Albert Hall and touring Wagner's Ring Cycle with Opera North. Sarah has a passionate interest in the operatic repertoire and as well as enjoying her freelance work with Opera North, she is also a long standing member of Clonter Opera Sinfonia, where she is also the orchestral manager.

Alongside her orchestral career, Sarah also performs regularly in chamber and solo settings, being a founding member of the Akoka Quartet, Ebonites Clarinet Ensemble and guesting with other ensembles around the country. With a broad interest in all musical styles, Sarah has enjoyed collaborations with composer/sonic artist, Norm Skipp, jazz musician, Matt Owens and Argentine Tango band, Frambuesas. Sarah has appeared as concerto soloist on a number of occasions, performing Copland, Weber and Finzi and gave the UK premier performance of Scott McAllister's Black Dog for clarinet and wind orchestra at the 2004 BASBWE Festival.

In her spare time Sarah enjoys travelling, learning languages, playing tennis and dancing Argentine Tango.


Thomas Verity

Thomas studied at Manchester University and the Royal Northern College of Music.


He has performed, recorded and broadcast with orchestras across the UK, including guest principal with the Hallé Orchestra, BBC Philharmonic, the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra, Royal Northern Sinfonia, the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, BBC Concert Orchestra and Manchester Concert Orchestra. He was a member of the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra from 2011 to 2018, with highlights including tours to Spain, China and Japan, and playing principal clarinet in the BBC Proms. In the summer of 2017 Thomas took part in an adventurous project to perform Beethoven’s Eroica Symphony from memory in the Royal Albert Hall and the Concertgebouw, Amsterdam.


As a member of the Sterling Trio (, Thomas has performed in over one hundred concerts throughout the UK, with highlights including Manchester’s Bridgewater Hall, and St Martin-in-the-Fields & St James’s Piccadilly, London. The Trio have twice been selected for the Making Music Concert Promoters’ Group, as well as the Park Lane Group Young Artists scheme, which led to a performance in the Queen Elizabeth Hall.


Thomas teaches at Manchester University and Chetham’s School of Music. He has also been a guest teacher at the RNCM, Yorkshire Young Musicians (Leeds College of Music), the Manchester Single Reed Summer School and the Harrogate Clarinet & Saxophone Summer School.


And on a completely different note, Thomas plays with Klezmer-ish (, a classical/world music fusion quartet exploring a wide range of music from travelling people across the world. Sell-out performances have included three visits to The Music Room (Liverpool Philharmonic Hall), and the group were featured artists on BBC Radio 3’s “World on Three” in June 2017.

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