An easy introduction to interpretation.

For all string players.

If you'd like to take part as a player, click Jesta/Adult.

Registration is at 10.30am

As musicians, we constantly have to find a balance between ‘doing what we’re told' and using our own artistic judgement to decide how we want to play the music; to interpret.
The concept of ‘interpretation' can remain unknown to many students for much of their formative years and yet it is one of the most important, and rewarding, aspects of learning to play a musical instrument; it distinguishes an artist from an ‘instrument operator'. Since art itself is a subjective issue, it can be a daunting prospect to introduce flexible interpretive ideas when much of the learning process is focusing on playing in tune or learning good it is frequently neglected.
This day aims to introduce the idea of making artistic judgements for oneself in a simple, friendly way. With a workshop in the morning, introducing and exploring the notion that something can be said or played in more than one way...with the main imperative being that there are no ‘wrong’ answers...we will aim to play together as a group in the afternoon with the primary focus being to explore the different ways we can perform our music. We complete the day with a short concert to demonstrate some of the possibilities we have explored during the day.
ESTA teachers who may find the idea of encouraging their students to think for themselves a little daunting (!) are most welcome to attend the day, and may even wish to join in.

The day will be run by Philip Heyman and Richard Barlow

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  • Faculty

    Philip Heyman
















    Philip Heyman gave his concerto debut aged eleven, and went on to study at the Royal College of Music, winning three major viola prizes. 
On graduation he was immediately offered a permanent post with the BBC Symphony Orchestra, with whom he toured extensively and appeared in many Prom concerts. Subsequently he accepted the position of Sub-Principal Viola with English National Opera where he remained for nine years. During this time he worked with many major British orchestras and ensembles, as well as giving recitals and teaching. 
In 1998 he took up his current position as Principal Viola for Welsh National Opera, and has subsequently performed many of the major orchestral solos, some on radio and television. He has been invited as guest Principal with many national orchestras and groups including CBSO, RPO, BSO RLPO and, most recently, BBCPO. 
As a member of the viola/piano duo ‘Altitude' he continues to give solo recitals, consultations and teaches, both privately and at Cardiff University. He was a member of the Cardiff based viola quartet Absolute Zero and has also started to explore the repertoire for guitar, flute & viola as a member of Still Life with Guitar 

In 2002, Philip became the owner of Europe's first Pellegrina pomposa model viola; an instrument he considers to be a significant innovation in string design and which he feels privileged to champion.


    Richard Barlow









    Richard grew up and learnt his violin-playing and orchestral trade in Leicestershire, followed by a B.A. degree in Music and German from Goldsmiths’ College, London. Richard then worked for 18 years as a teacher of music and foreign languages in a variety of schools in Devon, before moving to Cardiff in 2008, where he is now very busily occupied as a peripatetic violin teacher for the Cardiff and Vale of Glamorgan Music Service.

    As well as teaching, Richard finds time to play in the Cardiff Philharmonic Orchestra and Brecknock Sinfonia, but can also be seen and heard playing at weddings with Pluck and Squeeze, a local ceilidh band, on the electric violin with Here be Dragons, a Welsh folk rock group and his newest band The Soggy Mountain Boys, who play a range of folk music. 

  • Details and Costs


    School of Music Cardiff University

    Music Building
    Cardiff University
    Corbett Road
    CF10 3EB

    (0)29 2087 4816


    REGISTRATION 10.30am

    Workshop 11-1pm

    Orchestra 2-4pm

    Concert 4.30pm

    Lunch 1pm-2pm. Please bring a packed lunch!


  • Timetable

    REGISTRATION 10.30am

    Workshop 11-1pm

    Orchestra 2-4pm

    Concert 4.30pm

    Lunch 1pm-2pm. Please bring a packed lunch!

  • Terms and Conditions

    Conditions of Booking.

    Booking is open to members and non-members of the European String Teachers' Association. For details of membership of ESTA(UK) please contact the membership secretary or visit our ESTA Benefits page.

    In case of illness or other circumstances beyond our control we reserve the right to alter advertised presenters but will inform you if this proves necessary.

    The European String Teachers' Association accepts no responsibility for loss or damage to instruments or personal belongings. You are strongly advised to provide your own insurance for instruments and other possessions.

    ESTA reserves the right to take photographs and video content. If you have any objections please email

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