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Helen Downham

Helen Downham Cello Teacher (Northampton)

Helen Downham Gold Member

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  • Professional Qualification MusB (Hons.)
  • Professional Qualification PG Dip RNCM, MA
  • Disclosure & Barring Service (DBS, formerly CRB) Check Current DBS certificate
  • Professional Membership Musicians' Union


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Personal Message
I am a professional cellist and experienced teacher based in Ringstead, East Northants. I teach mainly at my home but may be happy to travel to you within a reasonable distance so please do ask.
Which subject(s) do you teach?
I teach cello to students of all standards. Beginners, both children and adults, are very welcome, as are more advanced pupils. I am happy to prepare students towards ABRSM exams. I also give chamber music coaching.
Tell me about your qualifications.
I have a Postgraduate Diploma in Performance from the Royal Northern College of Music as well as an undergraduate degree (MusB (Hons.)) from Manchester University. Most recently I have gained a Masters in String Quartet Performance from the University of Sheffield.
What kind of experience do you have?
I am an experienced teacher who has taught children of all ages (5-18) and lots of adults. I currently teach at Herne Hill School (5 and 6 year olds) and St Gabriel's College (11-18). I have extensive experience teaching in a private setting as well as on the Oxford Cello School for the last 8 years. Additionally, I have experience of working with children with special needs (Special Virtuosi).
How much do you charge?
I charge £35 an hour, £25 for 45 mins and £18 for half an hour for lessons at my home. I charge slightly more if I travel to you to cover petrol costs and travelling time. Lesson length depends on both the age and standard of the pupil. If you're not sure I can advise what I think would be best.
Where do you teach?
Although I am based in Ringstead I have a car and am happy to travel to many of the surrounding towns and villages, including Thrapston, Wellingborough, Kettering, Rushden, Raunds, Burton Latimer etc. If you're not sure, please ask!
When are you available?
I am happy to teach at a mutually convenient time - all days of the week except Tuesdays, and both daytimes and evenings are options.
Which ages and levels do you teach?
I teach students of any age and ability so whatever your situation, please feel free to get in touch.
Which qualifications do you prepare your students for?
I can teach the ABRSM syllabus or any other preferred examining body but am equally happy to teach for the student's enjoyment with no pressure to do exams.
Do you have an up-to-date DBS (Disclosure & Barring Service, formerly CRB) Certificate?
Do you belong to any professional organisations?
I am a member of the Musicians' Union.
Where and with whom did you train?
I studied with Bernard Gregor-Smith of the Lindsay Quartet at Manchester University and Hannah Roberts at the RNCM.
Do you have a personal message for students?
If you love the sound of the cello and are thinking of starting to learn this beautiful instrument, or are wanting to pick it up again after a break, I would love to hear from you. I can guarantee engaging and productive lessons with noticeable results. I can also provide additional lessons for those learning at school who might want extra tuition outside of school.