About the Adjudicators
Helen Deakin gained a first class degree from the Royal Academy of Music
(piano and clarinet, joint first study) and a PGCE from Durham University. She
also has considerable experience of solo and choral singing, of both instrumental
and choral directing, and of string repertoire.
As an ABRSM examiner, Helen has worked extensively throughout the UK and
around the world, including Europe, Hong Kong, Singapore, Korea, New Zealand
and the USA. As well as examining, she is a regular presenter at the ABRSM
Annual Conferences and she has presented many workshop days across the UK.
As a member of the ABRSM Professional Development Panel, she has worked
with instrumental teachers in the UK and overseas. Helen is also an adjudicator
member of The British and International Federation of Festivals, something she
As a founder member of Clavis Music, Helen is much in demand, giving
presentations and workshop days on all aspects of performing and teaching. She
directs a series of chamber music courses and runs workshops for both pianists
and piano teachers, which have proved very popular. A very experienced
teacher, Helen’s specialism is chamber music. She performs as a soloist and as
an accompanist and with many chamber groups and orchestras.
Donal McCrisken is a Belfast based teacher and musician with many years
experience as pianist, accompanist, conductor, examiner and adjudicator. He
holds a BMus degree from Queen’s University Belfast and a Masters in Music
Theory and Analysis from University of Ulster. He is Head of Music at St
Malachy’s College Belfast, Northern Ireland’s first specialist music school. Since
1999 Donal has been conductor of chamber choir, Cappella Caeciliana, which,
under his direction, has given concerts and sung liturgies all over Northern
Ireland, in Dublin, Germany, Austria and Italy. They have recorded three
successful CDs and have broadcast widely on radio. Donal is an adjudicator for
the British and International Federation of Festivals.
Charlotte Petersen is one of Scotland’s most talented composers and
arrangers of traditional music for clàrsach. She studied with Savourna Stevenson
before taking her degree in harp performance at the RSAMD.
Her arrangements have been published in a series of books and a number of
these are included in the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland’s Traditional Music
Borders based, Charlotte teaches in schools across Edinburgh. Her warm stage
presence and skilful communication have made her a sought after performer for
prestigious events and a very popular adjudicator in Scotland and abroad.
Mhairi Marwick was brought up playing music from a young age. Having
been inspired by some of the foremost fiddle players in Scotland, she gained a
first class honours degree in Applied Music from Strathclyde University in 2013
and was a finalist in BBC Radio Scotland’s Young Traditional Musician of the
Year in 2014, which gave her a platform in the Scottish Music Scene.
Mhairi has toured extensively in Europe with “Fat Suit” Band. She has also
performed with various bands in America, Europe and Taiwan. She teaches
regularly and has started up a Folk Night in her local area.
Graham Dickie studied piano, singing and conducting at the RSAMD, now
the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland. He was appointed the youngest
professional MD in Britain to the newly formed Independent Opera, conducting
various operas throughout Britain.
He joined the music staff of Scottish Ballet and was a part-time tutor at the
RSAMD. He also worked as a vocal coach/repetiteur for Scottish Opera and
Glasgow Grand Opera.
Graham has been involved with the Dance School of Scotland since 1983,
founding the National Musical Theatre Course in 1998. He is also founder and
director of the national Young Scottish Musical Theatre Performer of the Year
Award and the Singers’ Company.
Brian Marjoribanks studied at the Edinburgh College of Speech and Drama,
Jordanhill College of Education and the Open University. He then joined the
Gateway Repertory Theatre, Edinburgh, followed by a season at the Metropole
Theatre, Glasgow. He taught at the Queen Victoria School, Dunblane before
being appointed Lecturer in Speech and Drama at Notre Dame College of
Brian presented BBC Sport programmes, both television and radio, for 17 years.
In 2003, he was appointed Chairman of Scottish Television. He has adjudicated
in Scotland and Northern Ireland and was an international juror of the drama
section at the Prix Italia Television Festival in Venice.
Allana Creighton, a member of RSCDS, Perth, has experience of teaching
dance for many years, including training many teams for various festivals.
She has danced in demonstration teams in Germany and Finland and throughout
Scotland, including the Edinburgh Military Tattoo and has taught at the RSCDS
Summer School in St Andrews for 9 years.
She was appointed a Medal Test Assessor in 2012 and an adjudicator in 2013.