Born in Dublin, but raised in Aberdeen, Julia began piano lessons at the age of four. Studying with Denis Matthews and David Parkhouse at the North East Scotland Music School. In 1982 Julia won a scholarship to study piano at the RSAMD in Glasgow with Laurence Glover. Whilst a student at the academy, she won all the available prizes for piano solo, accompaniment and chamber music. Having gained her B.A. and completed a year of postgraduate study, Julia joined the staff of the Conservatoire as vocal coach, a post she still holds. Julia is one of the busiest accompanists in the country, appearing in recital with many distinguished artists. Concerts have taken her all over the world, with recitals in London, Tokyo and Geneva as well as appearances at the Proms, the Edinburgh Festival and Cardiff Singer of the World. She appears as orchestra pianist with the BBC SSO, the RSNO and SCO, and broadcasts and records regularly. She is music assistant to Eberhard Friedrich at the Bayreuther Festspiele in Germany.
Along with Malcolm Martineau and Tom Allen, Julia is proud to be associated with the Samling Foundation, furthering the talents of a new generation of singers.