The Ridgeway Ensemble (Judith Sheridan, voice, Margaret Richards, cello, and Daniel King Smith, piano) was formed in 2008 to bring both popular and less widely performed music to churches and communities within Bucks, Beds and Herts. More recently, the ensemble has performed further afield, including two concert tours of the South of France. Recent engagements have included concerts for the Roseland Music Society in Cornwall, the National Trust at Wimpole Hall, Sir John Soane's Museum in London, Girton College, Cambridge, and Hampstead Music Club. The Ensemble often include narration, or readings of prose and poetry in their programmes, and for these they are joined by reader William Winfield.
Judith Sheridan - Voice
Hailing from the north of England, Judith studied in Manchester and Lancaster before heading for Germany where she spent ten years happily treading the boards as an Opera Diva! Since returning to the UK she has performed regularly at home and abroad with the Midgard Ensemble, Duality and Twenty21. She has taught voice at Exeter University, Queen’s University Belfast and the Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama. She currently teaches in London and Berkhamsted. She regularly leads workshops with “Counterparts” and conducts the Beacon Community Choir and Ivinghoe Singers and Sing Wilstone. Judith is vocal consultant to and associate conductor of The Amadè Players and, as Artistic Director and conductor of Toccata – Musical Productions for Charitable Causes, has toured India, Kenya, Zambia and Sri Lanka.
Her special interest in the music of Jewish composers banned by the Nazis has led to performances and lectures in the UK and USA, and a CD entitled “Forbidden Voices” is available on the Divine Art label.
Margaret Richards - Cello
Margaret was born in London and educated at Girton College, Cambridge and the Royal Academy of Music. For 6 years she played opera, operetta and symphony concerts in the orchestra of the Staatstheater Darmstadt, Germany, before returning to the freelance world in London to pursue her interest in baroque music in particular. She has given concerts both at home and touring abroad as a member of many orchestras including the London Festival Orchestra, the London Classical Players and the Hanover Band, and has appeared as both cellist and viola da gamba player with numerous chamber ensembles such as Florilegium, the New London Consort and the Cambridge Baroque Camerata. She plays regularly with the Holborne Players in Cumbria. With the Apollo Consort she has recorded works by the 17th century composer John Jenkins. She now lives in Buckinghamshire, teaching in London and giving concerts at home and abroad.
Daniel King Smith - Piano
Daniel performs internationally as both soloist and accompanist. A finalist in the BBC Young Musician of the Year, he went on to win the Harold Craxton and Max Pirani prizes as a student at the Royal Academy of Music, and prizes for both solo and accompaniment at the Haverhill Sinfonia competition. Formerly staff accompanist at both the Royal College of Music and Royal Academy of Music Junior Departments and at the Purcell School, he has performed at the Royal Festival Hall and Wigmore Hall, and now works entirely as a freelance chamber musician. Daniel has recorded a number of CDs, including releases with Anna Hashimoto on the Meridian label.
William Winfield - Reader
William is a modern languages graduate of Cambridge University. The former head of a London independent school, William is an accomplished violinist and chamber music player. He has forged strong links with a school in India and returns regularly to teach the students and to mentor individuals.
William combines his lifelong passions for chamber music and languages as reader for many Ridgeway concerts.
Esther King Smith - Violin
Esther King Smith studied at the Royal College of Music with Dona Lee Croft, undertaking both an undergraduate degree and a postgraduate diploma. Whilst studying at the RCM, Esther was awarded both the Helen Just and Susan Connell Prize and the Sacconi String Quartet Prize. In 2008 she was awarded a postgraduate scholarship at Canterbury Christ Church University to study for a Masters Degree with the late Carmel Kaine and the Maggini Quartet.
Esther is the Principal Second Violinist of the Orchestra of St. Paul’s, with whom she performs across England and has recorded several discs. She also performs with orchestras across the country including the English Symphony Orchestra, Opera Holland Park, the Welsh Sinfonia, the London Concert Orchestra, the English Young Artists’ Sinfonia, the London Choral Sinfonia and Winslow Hall Opera. Esther teaches the violin and chamber music at the Royal College of Music Junior Department and at Imperial College, London.