Cello player from Doncaster shares his experiences of being a musician during the pandemic

A Doncaster musician says his experience of being a cello player during the lockdown was hard as he did not qualify for government funding but despite that, he is still looking forward to the future of his musical career.

Saturday, 12th September 2020, 7:00 am

Stephen Donoghue was thriving in the early months of this year, playing his cello at weddings and private events.

The 27-year-old from Scawsby said: “All of my work was cancelled or moved to next year.

Sign up to our daily newsletter

The i newsletter cut through the noise

Stephen is a music teacher and instructs with both the cello and the saxaphone.

“I’ve only played two gigs since restrictions have eased and I did not qualify for government help so things have been hard.”

Stephen is a music teacher as well as a freelance musician.

He instructs with both the cello and the saxophone but he says that business has been slow as people have had to be more frugal with their finances.

As Stephen did not qualify for government help during the lockdown he says times have been difficult.

“I understand the dilemma as I myself have only been able to buy essentials recently.”

Stephen is currently looking for more pupils in Doncaster and can arrange a curriculum based on skill level and interest.

“I have had students from the age of 20 right up to retirement,” Stephen said.

“I want to help people who want music in their lives.”

Stephen is a freelance musician and most of his trade comes from weddings and private events which have been moved or cancelled due to Covid-19.

Stephen was inspired to start learning the cello around four years ago when he fell in love with the band Clean Bandit and since has developed an obsession with the instrument.

As a regular busker in Doncaster town centre Stephen was afraid that Covid-19 would kill off the opportunity for public music events but he says whilst it’s different it’s still possible to play for a bustling audience.

“Which is a shame because that’s how I book a lot of my weddings or events when people hear me in the street then come to enquire.”

Stephen is optimistic about the future of the arts sector and has recently decided to become part of a duo with a violinist.

You can find out more about Stephen’s music lessons here.

Thank you to all who support local journalism with a print subscription. The events of 2020 mean trusted, local journalism is more reliant than ever on your support. We couldn't do it without you. Please subscribe here https://www.localsubsplus.co.uk/ so we can keep campaigning on your behalf. Stay safe.