Q&A: Dec Goodhall

May 3, 2015

Let’s start with obvious: What’s your favourite colour?

That’s a tough one, I change my mind about that as much as I change clothes. If we had to go with one however, it would be Glaucous (bluish-grey or green).

Food or drink?

Both.

Ok, what about you as a person? Can you tell us a bit about your family?

It’s all pretty boring really. It’s just me, mum, dad and I have a brother who currently resides in Denmark, bit of a Scandophile. My mum works for Hertfordshire county council, my Dad works for Discover, a bank based in the States. My brother who plays jazz saxophone was my initial inspiration to learn a wind instrument. Had it not been for my parents persistent nagging to practice and playing duets and jamming with my brother, I don’t think I’d be where I am with my playing now.

So how did you get in to playing your instrument?

I was often taken to my brothers concerts from a young age (often against my will!), so the only way I saw of getting out of being a reluctant audience member was to learn an instrument, which was inevitably brass as it’s the loudest.

I originally wanted to learn trumpet, however I found the large mouthpieces more comfortable, so I started having lessons on Euphonium at the local music centre (Harpenden Musicale) when I was 8. When I was 11, I started to really get into my jazz and took the trombone aged 11, continuing lessons on both instruments at Musicale.

At 14 I was offered a place at Junior Guildhall to study both Euphonium and Trombone. Whilst there, I was inspired by the exceptional talents of both my teachers and fellow students and decided I wanted to pursue a career in both orchestral music and jazz.

Greatest musical moment so far?

Whilst there have been many great ones over the years, the most recent great musical moment would probably be my final recital at Trinity. I was supported by and worked with the cream of the crop of Trinity’s current and ex students in various pieces, and one of the best occasions where my (overly) rigorous preparation on myself paid off.

What about your plans for the future?

Just continuing to do what I’m doing really, but more of it! Like Andy I’m also considering a PHD but haven’t decided what avenue of study yet, probably astro-physics.

Finally, what is it like playing with Ferreira Brass?

Great! I’ve finally found a chamber group where we can be brutally honest with each other without stepping on egg-shells, which is great for me because I hate being told I’m doing something wrong nicely. There’s also room for honest discussion as well about various topics, which I think is the crucial ingredient for a chamber group to function well. There’s always room for banter too, which helps after concerts or rehearsals with a more intense work environment to let off steam and remind us we're good mates at the end of the day as well as an ensemble.