Karen studied classical violin under Julian Haylock and then Jeremy Ballard (Birmingham Conservatoire), and is a first violinist in DPO (Devon Philharmonic Orchestra). She also plays electric violin and octave violin in folk and popular genres. She has recorded as a session violinist in many studios across London including CTS Lansdowne, Angel, and Abbey Road. Having relocated with her family she now plays primarily in the South West, and via the home recording studio.
Regular bands and groups include:
A violin duo with local violinist Naomi Blundell based in East Devon. Performing a broad repertoire including classical, jazz, blues, folk, and pop Karen and Naomi are able to provide the perfect ambience for any occasion.
Devon Philharmonic Orchestra – Karen performs major orchestral works as a first violinist in Devon Philharmonic Orchestra under the baton of Musical Director Leo Geyer, and Leader Clare Smith.
Essentially Music Collective – Along with her husband, guitarist Mike Eaves, and many other amazing musicians Karen is part of the Essentially Music Collective, providing music for concerts, corporate functions and events as well as birthdays and weddings.
Karen and Mike playing Armando’s Rhumba:
Commercial and TV Session Work
Karen’s commercial and TV Session work includes: British Airways, Mercedes, Nissan, Expo 2000, Nannies From Hell, Granada TV, Commonwealth Games (Manchester), Letterman Show, CBeebies, Natural History Museum, Royal Albert Hall, Hammersmith Apollo.
Previous bands and groups include:
Leader of ESQ An experimental string quartet working with jazz pianist and composer Jill Jarman to compose, produce, record and perform Opus 42, 3 major works commissioned by Arts Council England:
Opus 42 – Jill Jarman and ESQ
1 Voices String and vocal quartet (3 movements)
2 Moods String Quartet, piano and electronic bass (3 movements)
3 Friendship String and vocal quartet, piano/keys, fretless bass and soprano saxophone
Violin 1 – Karen Eaves (née Akroyd), Violin 2 – Anne-Marie Kirby, Viola – John Greswell, Cello – Jo Cox, Fretless Bass – Paul Downing, Piano/Synth – Jill Jarman, Soprano Saxophone – Phil Todd, Soprano – Jaqueline Barron, Alto – Mae McKenna, Tenor – Jeremy Rose, Bass – Lyndsay Benson
Opus 42 Excerpt:
Electric violinist and arranger with indie/pop band Spectacle, performing original material, supporting acts including My Life Story and signed to indie label Poppy Records. In addition to this Karen has arranged, performed and recorded strings for a number of other artists and singer/songwriters.
Function bands and Celidh bands – violinist and fiddler in various bands including Nightwatch, Candleford Ceilidh, Viano and Ikura for functions, weddings, corporate events etc.
Karen also sings in choirs including recent performances under the direction of Hannah Brine and Robert Howes at the Royal Variety Show 2016 with Gary Barlow, Tim Firth and the cast of the West End Musical The Girls, and at the opening of the Olivier Awards 2017 again with Gary Barlow, Tim Firth and the cast of The Girls.