Photograph of Aurora Trio by David Myers
The Mary Ryan Concert
The Aurora Trio is an exciting young chamber ensemble, which is quickly developing a reputation for pushing the boundaries of its unusual instrumentation. Its repertoire comprises many new works and original arrangements alongside core flute, viola and harp repertoire. Since its conception in 2012, the trio has performed widely across the UK; recent engagements include recitals at the Wigmore Hall, Colston Hall, Queen Elizabeth Hall Front Room, Halesworth Festival, Norwich and Norfolk Festival, and Roehampton University. From 2014-16, the trio held a prestigious chamber music fellowship at the Royal Academy of Music. During their time as fellows, they worked closely with performers and composers from the student body as well as from the Junior Department and Open Academy (the learning and participation department). The Aurora Trio are selected musical artists for ‘Live Music Now’ and ‘The Concordia Foundation’. In July 2016, they were awarded the Dorothy Parkinson Memorial Award for Young British Musicians at Harrogate International Festival.
The Aurora Trio was first established at the Royal Academy of Music. Emma and Heather had previously played as a flute and harp duo; in 2010 they performed Mozart’s Flute and Harp Concerto with the European Union Chamber Orchestra. Joe Bronstein joined the Academy in 2012, and was invited by Emma and Heather to form the trio; the position was then taken over in 2017 by violist Jordan Sian.
The trio have been fortunate to receive coaching from flautists Kate Hill and William Bennett, violist Martin Outram and harpist Karen Vaughan.
Emma Halnan (flute) first came to prominence as the woodwind category winner of BBC Young Musician 2010. Since then, she has performed at major venues worldwide, and has appeared as concerto soloist with orchestras such as the BBC Concert Orchestra, London Mozart Players, and the Welsh Sinfonia. Emma was principal flute of the European Union Youth Orchestra 2014-16. She has also appeared as guest principal flute in the BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra, and guest principal piccolo of English National Opera. Emma won the Sir Karl Jenkins/Arts Club Classical Music Award 2016, in association with Classic FM, and has been selected as a Making Music Philip & Dorothy Green Young Artist 2018-20. She is also a City Music Foundation Artist. Emma studied at the Royal Academy of Music with William Bennett and Kate Hill, and afterwards privately with Robert Winn.
As a chamber musician, violist Jordan Sian has performed across the UK and Europe in concert halls including the Wigmore Hall, Southbank Centre, Sage Gateshead, Cadogan Hall and Kammermusiksall of the Berlin Philharmonie. Recent festival appearances have included both Illuminating Britten and Dialogue at the Barbican Centre, the Allegrovivo Kammermusikfestival in Austria and Gaestival in Switzerland. Jordan made his concerto debut in 2004 and has appeared as a soloist throughout the UK, most notably at King’s Place and St. Paul’s Cathedral. He has been a prizewinner in international competitions, receiving awards from the European Music Festival for Young People, Val Tidone Strings Competition, Worshipful Company of Musicians and BBC Performing Arts Fund. Jordan has performed alongside artists such as Eric Whitacre, Sarah-Jane Bradley and members of the Maggini and Zehetmair Quartets. He has appeared on numerous chamber music broadcasts for BBC radio.
Heather Wrighton was inspired to play the harp at the age of six and as a junior student at Trinity College of Music she studied harp with Gabriella Dall’Olio and Frances Kelly and continued her studies at The Royal Academy of Music, London with Karen Vaughan, graduating with an MA (Distinction), BMus(Hons) and an LRAM. From a young age Heather has been interested in different types of harps and in addition to the Classical Harp she plays Celtic, Baroque triple and Paraguayan Harps.
Heather currently freelances as a soloist, orchestral and chamber musician which has led her to perform at prestigious concert venues including The Royal Festival Hall, Cardiff Millennium Centre, Royal Opera House, Cadogan Hall, St John’s, Smith Square, Kings College Chapel, Cambridge, Glyndebourne Opera House, Kensington and St James’ Palaces.