Kristi Kapten, piano • Rachel Spencer, violin • Duncan Strachan, ‘cello
Current EMS Residency Ensemble, The Kapten Trio is made up of three outstanding graduates of the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland, the Estonian Academy of Music and Theatre, and Oxford University. The trio formed in 2011 whilst students at the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland, where they were chosen as Young Artists in Residence and received coaching from Susan Tomes (Florestan Trio), Ilya Gringolts, and Harald Herzl amongst others. They have since gone on to develop a reputation as one of the top piano trios in the country, known for their energetic, passionate and exciting performances across the UK and further afield.
Kristi Kapten is a prize-winning Estonian pianist. She received her Bachelor’s Degree in 2010 from the Estonian Academy of Music and Theatre (EAMT) where she studied with Peep Lassmann. She then became a Master student at the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland in Glasgow, studying under a full scholarship with Fali Pavri, receiving prizes in several prestigious competitions (Jock Holden Memorial Prize for Mozart, Bamber/Galloway Recital Prize, Walcer Prize) and graduating with Distinction. Between 2013 and 2017 Kristi has been enrolled in Doctoral studies at the EAMT, completing her artistic research on performance issues in György Ligeti`s Etudes for Piano. In 2011, Kristi won 1st prize in the II Tallinn International Piano Competition. Kristi has performed with several orchestras and given recitals in many countries, including Sweden, United Kingdom, Ireland, China, Finland and Lithuania. As a chamber musician, she has performed in the Edinburgh International Festival, Glasgow’s Cottier Chamber Project and APAP showcases in New York. Kristi has played in masterclasses with Stefan Arnold, Boris Berman, Leon Fleisher, Steven Osborne and others.
Violinist Rachel Spencer enjoys a wide-ranging freelance career as a soloist and chamber musician. Originally from Holmfirth in West Yorkshire, she studied at the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland with Peter Lissauer and James Clark, and subsequently at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama with Alexander Janiczek, graduating with Distinction and a diploma for outstanding performance. As a chamber musician Rachel has appeared with groups including the Assembly Project, Ensemble Perpetuo, as a guest with the Maxwell and Edinburgh Quartets and with artists including Benjamin Grosvenor, Charles Mutter, David Watkin and Alasdair Beatson. She is in demand as a concerto soloist and she has appeared at festivals across Europe and on broadcasts for BBC Radio 3 and BBC Radio London. Passionate about music education, Rachel has been an artist for outreach scheme Live Music Now since 2011, a position which has seen her lead music education projects across the UK, Denmark and the Middle East.
Cellist Duncan Strachan was brought up in the west highlands of Scotland and studied at St Mary’s Music School in Edinburgh before going on to read music at St Catherine’s College, Oxford where he graduated with a Double First Class Honours. Whilst at Oxford, Duncan studied cello with Colin Carr and chamber music with Laurence Dreyfus. He then went on to study for a Masters degree at the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland with Robert Irvine. During his studies he won numerous prizes and awards and in 2010 received the Busenhart Morgan-Evans Award from the Worshipful Company of Musicians, and won the Waddell Prize for Scottish String Players. Duncan is cellist in the Maxwell Quartet, and has appeared as a guest artist with many ensembles including Florin Trio, Greenwich Trio, and the Edinburgh Quartet. He has appeared at festivals including BBC Proms, Cheltenham Festival and SOUND Festival, and has featured in broadcasts for BBC Radio 3 and BBC Radio Scotland. In 2015 he took up the position of artistic director at the Loch Shiel Spring Festival.