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Marian Givens

Marian started learning the violin aged 9 through the Wiltshire Music Service in Salisbury. It was a love/hate relationship with the violin for some time but, aged 16, inspiration came in the form of new teacher Joan Schmeising, the County Youth Orchestra, conductor Malcolm Binney, and Tchaikovsky’s Serenade for Strings.

Career plans firmly cemented, Marian went on to read Music at Royal Holloway University, before completing the two-year Postgraduate Diploma in performance and LRAM (teaching)at the Royal Academy of Music. A keen traveller, she then participated in master classes in Sweden and Spain and spent six months at Palau de les Arts in Valencia, working with the late Lorin Maazel, Georges Pretres, and Zubin Mehta.

Marian currently enjoys a varied career, combining her love of both pop and classical music with session and West End work. She has toured with Beverley Knight, Sophie Ellis Bextor, Giorgio Moroder, and is co principal second violin of the Essential Orchestra, touring regularly with Pete Tong and making TV appearances. She also freelances with orchestras such as the BBC Concert Orchestra and London Mozart Players and leads string sections for Leo Green and Benjamin Clementine in live shows.

Marian joined the Bristol Ensemble in 2011 and loves the intimacy of a smaller group as well as the variety of projects the Orchestra produce. Friendships and connections have grown over the years and the Bristol Ensemble is an important part of Marian’s music-making.

As well as playing, Marian is passionate about education and teaches at Salisbury Cathedral and Wellington Schools. She has coached the violins of the West of England and Stoneleigh Youth Orchestras and enjoys workshops for children and young people.

Outside music, Marian enjoys yoga, walking on the beach, and playing with her four cats.