Icaria Duo

Icaria Duo

Thursday, 24th February 2022

Icaria Duo

(Flute & Harp)

  A selection of pieces from the following:  
  Saint-Saëns, Piazolla, Lauber,
Cras, Young and Borne

Further information:

Icaria Duo Icaria Duo

Icaria Duo

Flute and harp is a much-admired duo combination. The instruments have a natural rapport, complimenting each other across a wide range of genres and periods. Icaria are a dynamic young pair, formed of flautist Helena Gourd and harpist Catherine Derrick, whose programmes delight with combinations of old favourites, bold new music, and rediscovered works, showcasing every element of their instruments.

This performance will include the gloriously romantic ‘Fantaisie’ by Saint-Saëns, as well as an impressionistic ‘Suite en Duo’ by later French composer, Jean Cras, which beautifully evokes the movements of the ocean on which Cras spent much of his life as a naval officer. Charles Rochester-Young’s ‘The Song of the Lark’, inspired by a painting of the same name, gives a taste of birdsong, with some surprises along the way. Meanwhile medieval dances, tangos by Piazzolla, and a Fantaisie on themes from Bizet’s Carmen showcase Icaria’s fiery virtuosity.

Helena Gourd

As an orchestral flautist, Helena works with orchestras including the Halle Orchestra, the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra, English National Ballet, Philharmonia Orchestra, Welsh National Opera, Scottish Chamber Orchestra, Royal Opera House, Royal Northern Sinfonia, BBC Concert Orchestra, City of London Sinfonia, Birmingham Royal Ballet, Northern Ballet and St. Petersburg Ballet. Throughout 2016, she was a member of the Southbank Sinfonia with whom she performed in venues such as the Barbican, Glyndebourne, Cadogan Hall and the Notre Dame in Paris. Recent travels have taken her on a tour to Tokyo and Osaka, Japan, with the BBC SSO.

Helena studied with Sam Coles and Karen Jones at the Royal Academy of Music in London graduating with a First Class Honours degree. This was followed by a year at the Pole Superieur de Musique et Danse in Bordeaux, where she continued her studies with Sam and also with Jutta Pulcini. She was winner of the RAM Flute competition in 2014 as well as the Violet M Wallace award and the Joyce Anne Beckett Prize during her studies. She was also a 2014 winner of the Philharmonia Orchestra Martins Music Scholarship Fund, winning the June Alison Woodwind prize.

With a keen interest in contemporary music, a definite highlight during Helena's studies was performing Stockhausen’s “Gruppen” with the RAM’s Manson Ensemble and the London Sinfonietta at the Festival Hall. She was also accepted onto the 2014 London Sinfonietta Academy and recently performed with French contemporary ensemble Proxima Centauri in their “The Young Generation” showcase. In September 2016, Helena performed Memoriale by Pierre Boulez for broadcast on BBC Radio 3.

As a soloist, she gave her London recital debut in May 2015 alongside pianist Timothy End in the Royal Festival Hall. When she can, Helena performs across the UK as part of flute and harp duo, Icaria, with harpist Catherine Derrick. They were Tunnell Trust award winners in 2016 which resulted in a concert tour throughout Scotland.

Brought up on the west coast of Scotland, she began her studies with Louise Glanville and Sheena Gordon. Helena currently lives in south west London and divides her time between orchestral freelancing across the UK and teaching. She is currently teacher of flute at the Lady Eleanor Holles School for Girls.

Catherine Derrick

Catherine is a versatile young harpist, in demand both in the UK and abroad. As an orchestral musician she has performed with many national and international professional orchestras, including the Orchestra of the Royal Opera House Covent Garden, Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, Oslo Philharmonic Orchestra, BBC Concert Orchestra, Frankfurt Radio Orchestra, the Hallé Orchestra, Norwegian Radio Orchestra, City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra, Bergen Philharmonic Orchestra, English Chamber Orchestra, Birmingham Royal Ballet, Norwegian National Opera & Ballet, Britten Sinfonia, Stavanger Symphony Orchestra, and the London Chamber Orchestra.

Originally from Manchester, Catherine attended Chetham’s School of Music from a young age before moving to London to complete her undergraduate degree at the Royal Academy of Music under the tutelage of Skaila Kanga, Professor Emerita of harp. Catherine graduated with first class honours, and at her graduation ceremony was presented with a Regency Award for outstanding achievement. She went on to study with the renowned French harpist Isabelle Perrin at the Norwegian Academy of Music, where her masters degree was generously supported by the Philharmonia Martin Musical Scholarship Fund, the Countess of Munster Trust, and a Help Musicians UK Postgraduate Award.

In addition to being an active performer of new and contemporary music, Catherine is a keen chamber musician and recently directed her masters project exploring the chamber music of Japanese composer Toru Takemitsu. In 2018 Catherine performed Berio’s Sequenza II for harp at the Ensemble x.y Berio Day, and also collaborated with a group of contemporary dancers on an improvisatory piece for the På Tå Hev project run by the Norwegian Opera & Ballet. She has performed with the Nash Ensemble and regularly plays alongside flautist Helena Gourd. In 2016 their duo Icaria won a prestigious Tunnell Trust award, resulting in a tour of Scotland.

As a soloist, Catherine has won first prize in the North London Camac Harp Competition, second prize in the international ‘Martine Geliot’ Harp Competition in France, was a finalist in the Royal Academy of Music Patrons’ Award at the Wigmore Hall, and has given recitals for major music festivals including Kings Place Festival and the Three Choirs Festival. She has been the recipient of two awards from the Hattori Foundation and was a 2015 Britten-Pears Young Artist. Catherine has performed for HRH the Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh, and her playing has taken her from Manchester and London, to Europe and as far afield as Australia for the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting.