Harpenden Music Services and Support seeks to support any musician looking to develop wider areas of their musical skillset, in conjunction with regular instrumental or vocal tuition from their teachers. Hannah and Matt aim to draw on their wealth of experience as performers, teachers and examiners to provide high quality coaching or accompanying in a friendly and encouraging environment.
Matt Harrison studied a variety of musical instruments at school, and took 26 ABRSM exams between 1989 and 2008! He was inspired to take up the trombone aged 12 when a professional trombone quartet came to his school for the day to give workshops and a recital. He entered Chetham’s School of Music in 1998, initially as a first study cellist, but soon switched to become a first study trombonist under the tutelage of Rob Burtenshaw. He later studied at the Royal Academy of Music, during which time he was a member of the Gustav Mahler Jugendorchester. He graduated in 2005 with a BMus Honours degree, an LRAM teaching diploma and a postgraduate diploma. Since then he has been working professionally as a trombonist, performing with several of the country’s leading orchestras. Matt is currently principal trombonist with the Bath Philharmonia and tours the UK regularly as part of the orchestra of English Touring Opera.
Matt teaches all brass instruments at Aldwickbury School, Harpenden, where he has held other roles in the past, including directing the Pre-Prep Music Department. He teaches brass instruments and piano to several pupils of a wide range of ages and stages privately in and around Harpenden, and is the founder and Musical Director of the Harpenden Concert Band. He is also active locally as a piano accompanist and an organist, and works nationally and internationally for ABRSM as a grade, jazz and diploma examiner.
Away from music, Matt is likely to be found experimenting in the kitchen, climbing a mountain or riding his bike; getting frustrated with Manchester United; or perusing one of the many quiz apps on his phone!
Hannah Mitchell-Harrison is a professional, classically trained pianist based in Harpenden. A graduate of the Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama, she has built a varied career made up of performing, accompanying and examining for ABRSM.
Born in South Wales, Hannah began learning to play at two years of age with her mother as principal of Hebron Piano School, Aberdare. She gained an A grade in GCSE music at the age of thirteen and Grade 8 piano the following year. In her early years she competed in the South Glamorgan Festival for Young Musicians where she won many awards. In 2005, Hannah obtained her ABRSM diploma in solo performance (piano). In 2006, she graduated from the University of Exeter with a first class honours degree in music. Hannah then went on to study for her postgraduate diploma in solo performance at the Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama, studying piano with Michael Young. Whilst at RWCMD, Hannah played in a variety of masterclasses with pianists such as Bernard Roberts, Penelope Roskell, Leon McCawley and Boris Berman. She also entered the Concerto Trials and Hastings International Piano Concerto Competition with Rachmaninov’s Second Piano Concerto. In 2007, Hannah won the Jacobson Prize.
Following her time at RWCMD, Hannah teamed up with flautist Sarah Waycott to form the flute and piano duo Tranquillo who released it’s debut album in 2010. Tranquillo have performed at venues including St. David’s Hall, the Wales Millennium Centre, St. Martin-in-the-Fields, and regularly provide classical concerts for P&O and Cunard cruise lines, travelling as far as New Zealand. In 2014 she accompanied young Norwegian singer Tomine Mikkeline as she supported Aled Jones on his UK tour, and has more recently worked with celebrity vocal coach Carrie Grant, and joined the National Youth Concert Band as resident accompanist in 2019. Hannah is a grades, jazz and diploma examiner for ABRSM, both in the UK and internationally, working in places such as Hong Kong, Singapore, Malaysia and Dubai.
Whilst Hannah’s career takes her all around the world, when she is not travelling she enjoys performing and accompanying in the UK, as well as providing music for weddings and events. Outside of music Hannah enjoys spending time with family and friends, and has recently taken up running!