Royal Liverpool Philharmonic welcomes two new players to the orchestra

The Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra has announced the appointment of Emma Burgess as Principal Second Clarinet and Helena Mackie as Section Leader Oboe.

Emma Burgess is a graduate of the Royal College of Music. In 2013 she was selected as an RCM Rising Star. In addition to performing with the Liverpool Philharmonic, she has also performed regularly with orchestras including: London Philharmonic Orchestra, Orchestra of the Royal Opera House, Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, BBC Symphony Orchestra and BBC National Orchestra of Wales to name a few.

Emma has also performed at several prestigious music festivals including Cerne Abbas Music Festival, Cambridge Music Festival, North York Moors Chamber Festival, Edinburgh International and Fringe Festival’s and St Magnus Festival in Orkney.

On her appointment to the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra, Emma said, “It’s such an honour to join the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra as Principal Second Clarinet. It’s such a huge privilege to work alongside such talented and inspiring colleagues and I’m so excited to see what this next chapter brings.”

Helena Mackie has recently graduated from the Royal Academy of Music, where she studied for her Masters after an undergraduate degree in Music at Clare College, Cambridge. Helena greatly enjoys chamber music, and gives regular performances with her wind quintet, the Ormonde Ensemble. She started her musical career as a girl chorister at Salisbury Cathedral, and remains a keen singer. 

Speaking on her appointment, Helena said, “I am completely delighted to have been appointed as Oboe Section Leader for the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra. It’s a great joy to be part of such a prestigious ensemble that has a rich history of musical excellence. I look forward to collaborating with my brilliant colleagues and contributing to the orchestra’s artistic journey.

“Liverpool Philharmonic has a special place in the hearts of many, and I am looking forward to playing music that speaks to our audiences and continues to demonstrate the power of orchestral performances.”

As members of the Orchestra, Emma and Helena are part of an ensemble of professional musicians that perform in a programme of more than sixty concerts in the Grade II*- listed Liverpool Philharmonic Hall and on tour in the UK and internationally.

The Orchestra is led by Chief Conductor Domingo Hindoyan, who has recently extended his contract until July 2028. Domingo and the Orchestra opened the 2023/2024 on Thursday 21 September at Liverpool Philharmonic Hall with music from Bernstein, Copland, Gershwin and Rachmaninov, and performance from pianist Paul Lewis. The full season overview can be found here

Michael Eakin, Chief Executive of Liverpool Philharmonic, said, “On behalf of the entire Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra family, I am delighted to extend a warm welcome to our two exceptional new musicians as we commence the new season.

“We are thrilled to have Emma and Helena joining us. Their remarkable talents and passion for music are a wonderful addition to our ensemble, and we are confident that their artistry will contribute to the extraordinary performances that our audiences have come to expect.”

The award-winning Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra is the UK’s oldest continuing professional symphony orchestra. The origins of the Orchestra’s concert series date back to the formation of the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic concert society by a group of Liverpool music lovers in 1840.

Domingo Hindoyan became Chief Conductor of the Orchestra in 2021, joining a distinguished line of musicians who have led the Orchestra during its illustrious history. The Orchestra performs over 70 concerts each year in Liverpool and has long been a unique ambassador for the city through an extensive touring schedule throughout the UK and internationally and through broadcasts and recordings.

Image: Emma Burgess and Helena Mackie

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