Originally from the Lake District in Cumbria, Jo Ashcroft graduated from the Royal Scottish Academy of Music and Drama in 2008 with a BMus(Hons) and a PGDip in performance. Jo enjoys a varied career as a freelance performer, community musician and teacher. She plays regularly across the UK as a chamber musician in various ensembles. Jo is heavily involved in education and community music.
Since graduating Jo has delivered workshops with Live Music Now all over the UK and in Abu Dhabi, and has worked for Perth Concert Hall, NYCoS, Drake Music Scotland and RCS. Jo currently holds teaching positions at the Stewart's Melville Schools in Edinburgh and MuBu Zone in Helensburgh, as well as teaching at Big Noise Raploch.
In her spare time Jo loves playing and watching sport of almost any variety! She is a keen cricketer and plays for the women's team at Stirling County Cricket Club.
Ysla is from Fife and started learning violin at the age of 8. She quickly developed a passion for music and went on to study at the RSAMD with Edwin Paling and Jerre Gibson. Shortly after graduating, Ysla took a job in Portugal as a tutti violinist in Orquestra Do Norte, Amarante where she lived out her dream of playing in an orchestra abroad. After four years, the draw of Scotland was too much and she moved back home and started teaching violin in Falkirk council.
Ysla freelances with Scottish Ballet, regularly works on education projects with Scottish Opera; tutors violin for Mull Music Makers; teaches musicianship for NYCoS and regularly plays in various string quartets. She joined Big Noise in 2009 as a musician and has been a senior musician since 2013.
Born and raised in Glasgow’s east end, David started playing the ‘cello at the age of 6, attending East Glasgow Music School, a local charity organization which provides weekly instrumental lessons and choir/orchestra training at a fraction of the cost of private tuition.
David attended the Music School of Douglas Academy in Milngavie before going onto study Music (BMus Hons) at the Universities of Glasgow and Illinois. After that, he completed a two year postgraduate course in Cello Performance (MMus with Distinction) at the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland, studying with Robert Irvine.
David has performed with many of the Scottish professional orchestras, and with the contemporary music ensemble Red Note. He also plays piano in a ceilidh band and is part of a string trio called StringSound.
David joined the Big Noise family in Summer 2014 and became a senior musician in 2017.
Aline Harris (Temporary Senior Musician)
Aline originally comes from Kent where she studied at the Kent Junior Music school before continuing her studies at the Royal Northern College of Music with Raphael Sommer and Eduardo Vassallo. After gaining an honours degree she moved to Glasgow where she gained a postgraduate certificate in orchestral studies at the RSAMD learning with William Conway.
After leaving college, Aline worked as a freelance cellist with the Orchestra of Scottish Opera, Scottish Ballet and the RSNO. She worked for many years with Artlink Central bringing music into hospitals and care homes for dementia and Alzheimer’s patients. In 2007 she became a permanent member of the Orchestra of Scottish Opera.
Alongside her playing, Aline has developed her teaching career. Before joining Big Noise she was senior tutor for RCS Musicworks and has worked with the education department at Scottish Opera on many projects, including one in partnership with the Scottish Refugee Council and working with the Connect youth orchestra as well as devising and delivering education projects with Music Co-operative Scotland. She was appointed cello teacher at Aberdeen University in 2014 after working with the students in a series of chamber concerts and workshops.
As well as her playing and teaching commitments, Aline is also Mum to 4 lively boys who enjoy a multitude of sports and musical activities.