Paul is a performer, educator, choir leader, songwriter, arranger and folk song collector. Paul has an illustrious career as a folk music educator over the last 30 years. He holds an Honorary MA in Music Education from Plymouth University.
He sings in a duo with Marilyn Tucker – www.marilynandpaul.com - and the two of them have performed concerts and events both nationally and internationally.
Together they founded Wren Music, and they have recently been awarded the prestigious gold badge – from the English Folk Dance and Song Society.
Paul works with all ages and phases of people across the South West and beyond including large scale singing projects, first access instrumental work, special needs projects and with gifted and talented young people.
Wren Music is staffed by a team of skilled, experienced and highly qualified professional musicians of international repute. In addition to their artistic talent they also bring the qualities required by skilled educationalists. These include strong people skills and innovative teaching practises as well as a passionate commitment to working creatively with individuals and communities.
Supporting the musicians is an expert administrative and technical team maintaining the infrastructure essential to the smooth functioning of a diverse and ambitious organisation. This includes ensuring the availability of a large store of musical instruments and technology, enabling high quality recording and an up-to-date web presence.
Marilyn is co-founder of Wren with Paul Wilson. Marilyn has overseen the growth of the company from a two person to the organisation we have today.
Marilyn is a singer, storyteller, songwriter, oral historian and keen folklorist. Her singing is influenced by her family background living in the Dartmoor village of South Zeal, with a maternal side that sang at every family occasion and her father a singer who was very much in demand in local pubs and as a soldier in India to sing to his comrades. Marilyn’s own singing comes from the heart and has been described by John Kirkpatrick as ‘an example of English folk song should be sung’.
Marilyn has a B.A. in Social Sciences from Exeter and has completed the National Foundation Course for Arts Managers.
David Faulkner has been a member of the Wren Music team for over 15 years. He is a multi-instrumentalist, composer, arranger, dancer and singer.
David has focused on a wide range of areas for Wren, including Youth Inclusion music, Early Years, Adult Folk Orchestras and Disability Inclusion Groups.
Through working with Wren David has toured in Newfoundland, performed in and organised many concerts across Devon. Outside of Wren David works with influential groups such as the Eel Grinders and Zephyrus.
Becki Driscoll is an experienced fiddle-player, composer and workshop leader who has worked with Wren Music for over 10 years. She leads the Folk Orchestra of North Devon and the Fiddle Orchestra of Devon as well as running regular music groups with children and young people and a specialist early years project she has developed with Bideford Bay Children’s Centre. Alongside her work with Wren Becki performs regularly with her duo Nick Wyke & Becki Driscoll. www.englishfiddle.com
Nick Wyke is a fiddle player, guitarist and singer who has worked as a community musician with Wren Music in various capacities since 2001. From a background in rock and other music Nick has built on his knowledge of the folk idiom within Wren and as a freelancer over the last 15 years.
He has developed a specialist knowledge around the tunes from manuscripts collected in England from the 17th Century on, and in fiddle and guitar techniques, as well as bringing aspects of music theory and structure into his work with Wren.
He plays with "Nick Wyke & Becki Driscoll", "Gadarene" and "The Jim Causley Trio" as well as calling and playing in various ceilidh outfits.
Sarah Owen is a vocal coach, choir leader, composer, arranger and performer. She studied music at The University of Birmingham (BMus) and Goldsmiths College (MMus) before returning to Devon to train with Wren Music as a community musician, where she is now Head of the Vocal Programme. With a particular interest in the techniques of healthy voice production, Sarah has trained to an advanced level in the Estill Model (with Anne-Marie Speed, The Voice Explained, London), a programme to understand and control the specific structures in the vocal mechanism.
As well as leading regular choirs with children, teenagers, adults and people with a range of disabilities, Sarah is experienced at working on a wide range of vocal projects, from large scale singing events to song writing and leading vocal training sessions. As a performer, Sarah is part of folk and electronic duo, Solarference, and a soloist with chamber ensemble, Lavolta.
Sarah particularly loves how singing can bring people together from all walks of life and build communities. She passionately believes that not only can everyone sing but that each of us has a beautiful voice, which we can explore and develop to bring out its very best.
Jon Dyer is a practicing folk musician and performer based in Devon. After graduating from Falmouth University with a BA Hons in Music Performance in 2013 he has been working with Wren Music where he has gained many valuable teaching skills and experience. Jon is an experienced performer and regularly performs across the UK with Gadarene, Jon Dyer & Alfie Gidley and Palinka.
The Mandolin Orchestra of Devon (MOOD) is directed by Matt Norman. Matt is gaining a well-deserved reputation as one of the leading lights of the new generation of Devon-based folk artists. He is an innovative and entertaining musician, exploring traditional and contemporary English music as a performer, arranger, composer and songwriter. His imaginative approach to repertoire is complemented by his virtuosity on the mandolin. He has developed a unique style on the instrument, using rich textures and dramatic contrasts. Over the past couple of years Matt has regularly performed at major folk festivals in England and Europe, including the Sidmouth and Baring-Gould Folk Festivals. His CD Eight Days Late (Wren CD007) has been well-received by lovers of acoustic folk music.
My theatre career started while still at school and, without ever really having planned it, my hobby became my profession. Initially a technician, lighting designer and stage manager, I have toured on every scale with both opera and physical theatre companies before settling behind a desk with a stint as poacher turned gamekeeper at Arts Council England where I was Music Officer in the eastern region. During this time I worked with Sound Sense to establish the first regional community music network and also began a 10 year stint as stage manager on the main stage at the Cambridge Folk Festival. In 2002 I moved into venue management, initially at the Theatre Royal Bury St Edmunds where I played a key role in the delivery of a major capital project to restore the Regency masterpiece to its former glory and then at the Exeter Northcott Theatre where I led the organisation through a challenging period of change. I now work as a freelance producer and have just returned from a tour of Ireland with Footsbarn Travelling Theatre.
Emily Howard leads the Torbay Folk Choir and the Acorn Roots Choir. Emily has been playing singer/songwriter shows since the age of 14, and she brings this performance experience to her music leading. She studied a B Tech in popular music at South Devon College, and a BA Hons in Music Performance at Dartington College, relocating to Falmouth University. Emily achieved Grade 8 in singing through Trinity Guildhall, and is an accomplished guitar player. She has recently taken up the accordion, and her secret talent is she can play a good mouth trumpet!
Born to a Swedish mother and an American father, Rebecka grew up among the lakes and forests of southern Sweden. Coming from a musical family, she sang with her parents and siblings from an early age. She began to write songs and poetry at the age of five, and later learned to play the flute and guitar. She left Sweden for Devon in 1998 and spent three years at Dartington studying music, composing songs and playing with her fellow students.
She now works mainly as a freelance singing practitioner. As well as the West Devon Folk Choir she runs a Swedish choir, gives individual singing tuition to people of all ages, and runs a singing course for Drama students at Plymouth University. This social side of music-making complements her performing career, which has seen her supporting some of Britain’s finest acoustic and folk artists, including Martin Carthy, Phil Beer and Cara Dillon. Rebecka released her third studio album, Songs for Mrs. Beautiful, in September 2012, and her latest EP, Home, was released 2015 by Folkstock Records and proclaimed ‘a delight to the ears’.
Paul Tucker (Paulo) has been with Wren since 1999 (and earlier if you notice the family name!). He is the office manager and also Wren’s sound engineer, responsible for all the recording equipment, PA at events and the stock of instruments that Wren holds. He trained as a sound engineer at Deep Blue Sound in Plymouth he has built a reputation as an acoustic music specialist in the sound world. He plays guitar when he is not at work.
Amy is a freelance facilitator, evaluator and project manager. She worked for many
years for the National Foundation for Youth Music, and wrote their quality
framework for music education, before moving to Bristol to study for a master’s in
Social and Cultural Theory. Following a period working for the NHS, Amy also works as a relationship manager for The Fostering Network - a national charity for looked after children, foster carers and social workers. For Wren Music she delivers the face-to-face training days of the Certificate for Music Educators course, and supports other staff in evaluating their projects.
Info and photo to come ....