Alison read music at Oxford and was then given a scholarship by Trinity College of Music where she studied viol with Alison Crum, being awarded the college’s Silver Medal for Early Music Studies. She is a founder member of Chelys consort of viols where she enjoys researching and performing programmes covering all aspects of consort music, and with whom she made the world premiere recording of Christopher Simpson's four-part ayres. She has a particular interest in Renaissance viols (early viols made with no soundpost) with The Intrepid Academy, who specialise in music of the Italian Renaissance. Venturing into the 18th Century with a beautiful 7-string viol named Flo, Alison plays with trio sonata group Saltarello, and the Christian Baroque ensemble Dei Gratia. Alison has a great love of working with singers, and the affinity between the sound of the viol and the voice. She has recently been enjoying working on Musica Secreta's project 'Lucrezia Borgia's Daughter', recording the earliest published music from the musical convents of renaissance Italy.
A keen teacher of both children and adults, Alison is a tutor on a number of Early Music courses including the Easter Early Music Course and Norvis, and she regularly leads workshops for the various Early Music Fora. She is co-director of Rondo Viol Academy, which runs weekend courses for players of all standards from Elementary to Advanced. Alison teaches viol and violin both privately and in schools, and directs the Warwickshire Youth Waits, a Renaissance band for young players which includes everything from recorders and viols to crumhorns, shawms, sackbuts and more!
Alison's playing has taken her to some of the UKs best known concert venues, including St John's Smith Square and the Cadogan Hall for the BBC Proms, as well as to more unusual places such as lecture theatres in the University of Marrakech and the freezing rainy streets of London armed with a shawm for the Lord Mayor's Parade. She has worked with leading ensembles including the Rose Consort of viols and I Fagionlini, and has played for live broadcasts on BBC Radio 3, filmed for television, and recorded for BBC Radio 4.
Alison has had a number of educational books published with colleague and fellow viol player Jacqui Robertson-Wade. They include group teaching material for viols and recorders, and a children’s music theory series called 'The Notehouse People'. She has also published a modern edition of the divisions from Christopher Simpson’s 'Division Viol' treatise.