EX CATHEDRA | Carina Cosgrave - Double Bass

From our ‘Christmas Oratorio’ programme 2022

1. How long have you been a member of Ex Cathedra and why did you join?

I think I first joined Ex Cathedra back in 2013 for a concert of Mozart Nocturnes and Vespers in Leicester…. given how beautiful that programme
was, not joining wasn’t really an option for me! Ever since I’ve always found the ensemble to be a very welcoming place and Jeffrey is very enabling to play for. I feel that I’m part of a wonderful, unified group
when I play here.

2. What does a typical day look like for you?

Well, for me, no two days are the same and that is one of the best things about being a musician!

I guess an ideal day would include some yoga and as much time as possible with our beautiful dog Renee. Other than that, a day could include anything at all, but always it is music related! I could be practicing, rehearsing or performing and that could be music from c.1600 onwards or it could be a newly commissioned work, or theatre production. I also teach individual students and I coach ensembles. My students range from primary school age right through to conservatoire students, so I get to hear plenty of really talented musicians at very different moments in their journey- which I love! Sometimes I’m listening to exams or giving masterclasses, other times participating in education projects or occasionally on a course myself! I have the usual admin involved with being a freelancer (and the driving hours generated by being a bass player!) but when I go to the ‘office’ whether that’s the rehearsal room, teaching room or the stage, I feel like I’ve got the best seat in the house listening to my colleagues or students, and that’s pretty special and worth any amount of freelancer chaos!

3. If you could choose to perform again any piece that you have performed before with Ex Cathedra, what would it be, and why?

The most memorable performance I did with Ex Cathedra was undoubtedly The Baroque Passion programme we performed in 2021. Nearly all of the concerts I did during the lock downs were without an audience and many were filmed at venues that were new to me and often, didn’t have an audience with either due to the venue capacity or the restrictions. This performance in Symphony Hall was very different, we were in a venue which we all knew extremely well but it felt poignant and very lacking without the audience to interact with there. We were so used to their presence there normally; it had a very different atmosphere that day. Happily, we have played this programme since, with an audience this time, but that first performance will stay with me as a very special one and where the audience’s absence was very strongly felt.

4. What’s your musical “guilty secret”?

I think my musical “guilty secret” is that I have a large and indiscriminate capacity for remembering the lyrics to pop songs. Sometimes, I barely need one listen, and that means I have a slightly strange ability to turn on the car radio and know all the words to almost anything Magic or Heart FM can throw at me. It has impressed, or probably more accurately, shocked, many passengers over the years!