Sam McLellan is a second-year music student at Edinburgh University, studying piano and conducting under Peter Evans. He has previously served as guest conductor of Perth and Kinross Wind Orchestra and associate conductor of Perth Youth Orchestra, performing as part of the fringe festival, as well as serving as Musical Director of Perth City Operatic and Edinburgh University Savoy Operatic, and boys’ choir “The Motley Crew”.
He enjoys playing as both accompanist and soloist on the piano and regularly performs alongside soloists and choirs, most notably at the City of Derry International Choral Festival. He has taken orchestral and choral conducting masterclasses from renowned conductors Nigel Boddice, Holly Mathieson, Amy Bebbington, Jonathan Brett and Peter Evans. He is the conductor of Edinburgh University’s Composers Orchestra, and last year conducted the Royal Scottish National Orchestra in performance in Glasgow.
Conductor Ondřej Soukup is a graduate of the University of Edinburgh and currently holds principal conductorship with Edinburgh University Music Society Sinfonia and music directorship with Thomas Coats Memorial Choral Society, which regularly works with the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland Symphony Orchestra. Ondřej is also Guest Conductor of VoiceArc opera company, Founder and Principal Conductor of the Unison Chamber Orchestra, Music Director of InChorus, and Music Director of Edinburgh University Brass Band.
As assistant to conductor Lutz de Veer (Nürnberg) at the Berlin Opera Academy 2018, Ondřej performed Humperdinck’s Hänsel und Gretel at the OpernFest in Berlin. The following year, he was invited back to work on Le nozze di Figaro with conductor Peter Leonard (New York Philharmonic), and on Die Zauberflöte with conductor Tom Seligman (Royal Opera House). In 2019, he also worked as Maestro suggeritore for Wagner’s Das Rheingold alongside musical director Caroline Dowdle (Royal Opera House), and conductor Byron Knutson (Komische Oper Berlin) on a production by Dramatic Voices Program Berlin. Other conductors he has assisted include Will Conway (Chamber Orchestra of Europe) and Gregory Batsleer (Scottish Chamber Orchestra and Royal Scottish National Orchestra Chorus).
To the present day, Ondřej has been given several prizes and bursaries for conducting, most recently the Roderick Brydon memorial award; and has given concerts in Scotland, England, Spain, Latvia and Germany as well as his native Czech Republic. There, he also took Edinburgh University Music Society for its 150th anniversary tour.
Ondřej is very excited to be working with ERCU as a conducting fellow!