Stuart Beard (tuba)
At 6’ 4” tall, Stuart is well suited to playing the tuba; however he had initially started learning the violin, beginning lessons at the age of six. It was two years later that he moved across to brass instruments, learning the baritone horn. After a year Stuart decided to continue down the brass route, giving up his violin lessons. He quickly joined the Oxfordshire Schools Orchestra and the following year made the transition from a baritone to a 3-valve tuba.
A bursary from Future Talent enabled Stuart to purchase his own instrument, something which has made a huge difference to his playing. Before he received funding, Stuart was hiring a second-hand instrument which was significantly affecting his progress. Stuart now plays on a 4-valve Eb Tuba. His new instrument has a wider bore, larger mouthpiece with correct shank size to fit the wider bore lead-pipe and larger bell flare, all of which has enabled Stuart to improve his tone quality and projection whilst playing.
Stuart is a member of several ensembles within Oxfordshire and Berkshire. In Oxfordshire, he is part of the Oxfordshire Schools Symphony Orchestra (OSSO) and the touring variant of OSSO, with which he has toured to Germany. Stuart is also a member of the Oxfordshire County Youth Wind Band, in which he plays both Euphonium and Tuba. In Berkshire he plays with the Reading Area Concert Band, the Dawson’s Berkshire Youth Brass Band and the Berkshire County Youth Orchestra.
Stuart has recently auditioned for a place with the Oxfordshire County Youth Orchestra and after he has taken his Grade 8, plans to audition for a place in the National Youth Orchestra of Great Britain.
As well as having a huge impact on his playing, owning his own instrument has also meant that Stuart has been able to save money to help fund membership to various training ensembles and associated tours. Receiving support from Future Talent has also enabled Stuart to progress faster than he ever thought possible and has confirmed his ambitions of wanting to attend music college and pursuing a career in music.
“It’s great to have an instrument I can truly call my own…I have an ambition to go to music college and this will give me a great boost in my quest to get there.” (Stuart Beard)