Music Centre Staff

Find out about the staff at our music centres. All members of our staff are experienced musicians in their own right as well as being excellent and inspiring educators.

Flute Ensembles Staff

Nicky Russell
Nicky RussellHead of Centre and The Bridge String Orchestra
Passionate about music from an early age, Nicky made a first TV appearance aged 6. She studied the flute with Simon Hunt at the Guildhall School of Music and later specialised in Baroque flute with Stephen Preston. Nicky enjoys a career as a flute teacher and has extensive performance experience on both baroque and modern instruments as a soloist, chamber and orchestral musician. Nicky is currently co – principal of the Bath Symphony Orchestra.

Nicky was formative in setting up the South Gloucestershire Youth Wind Orchestra (SGYWO) and is founder and Director of ‘Flutissimo’ Senior Flute ensemble.

Fiona Hunt
Fiona HuntFlutissimo Intermediate
Fiona studied music at Royal Holloway, University of London where she was a Choral Scholar. She is also an accomplished flautist and is now teaching singing and flute in schools in South Gloucestershire.

Hailing from Downend she began her musical career aged six when she joined the choir at St. John the Baptist church, Frenchay, where she was head chorister for many years, gaining the St. Cecilia Award aged 12. She was twice a preliminary finalist in the BBC Radio 2 Young Chorister of the Year competition. For several years she was the Head Chorister of the RSCM Three Day Easter Choristers Course held annually at the Bristol Cathedral and has been a major soloist at many other RSCM events.

As a vocalist and flautist she has won many competitions and Eisteddfods and Championship classes and in 2004 as a flautist she was awarded the ‘City Waits’ and became the ‘Lord Mayor’s Musician’ for a year, a much coveted award.

Fiona has been fortunate to perform around the world, including Notre Dame, Paris and other prestigious venues in France, America, France, Italy, Poland and Latvia.

Simone Willis
Simone WillisFlutelets
Simone Willis began learning the violin from the age of six and later took up the flute and piano. She attended the Birmingham Conservatoire Junior Department, and studied for a BMus (Hons) at the Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama, where she was able to develop her performance and pedagogy skills. Simone graduated in 2014, and is currently an MPhil/PhD candidate at Cardiff Metropolitan University. Her research interests include musicians’ psychology, and she is particularly interested in the areas of musicians’ health and wellbeing, and developing strategies that will enable musicians to realise their full potential. Simone is currently an advisory board member for the Music Education Expo 2017.

Currently, Simone teaches flute and violin for South Gloucestershire Music Hub, as well as several schools in Wales and the South West. Simone enjoys performing both classical and jazz repertoire on the flute, and has performed as part of the Phoenix Collective alongside saxophonist Gilad Aztmon.

As Director of Flutetlets, Simone has enjoyed working with the children on their improvisation skills and developing their individual creativity. She has also worked with Flutelets on composition and they have written and performed their own pieces in several concerts.