At The Voice College we’re big believers in teachers not only being strong singers with a deep understanding of how the voice works, but also having great performance chops and professional experience in the music and / or theatre industries. Very few people want to train to sing to their bedroom walls, so we think that teachers who have a multi-faceted professional experience as well as teacher training and plenty of voice-geek smarts are of more use to their students than ivory tower academics who know everything there is to know about formants but have never actually set foot on a stage or in a recording studio.
With all that in mind we thought we’d keep you up to date with what Team VC is doing, because they’re in uber-busy mode right now!
First of all we need to welcome our newest teamster, Daniel Haslam. Dan is a singer, actor, vocal coach and musician (piano and guitar) who trained in musical theatre at the Dance School of Scotland and GSA Conservatoire in Guildford. He’s performed all over the world, including a European Tour of The Who’s Tommy, in concert for World Wide Events as one of The Twelve Tenors, and in the UK and European tours of The Twelve Irish Tenors for Spirit Productions. He’s also worked extensively as Principal Vocalist, Company Manager and Vocal Captain for Belinda King Creative Productions.
Dan’s teaching studio is in S.E. London and he revels in teaching cutting-edge vocal technique as well as performance skills. As a former Steve Balsamo Scholarship winner, Dan trained via the college to Advanced Professional Diploma level, and we’re totally gleeful to have welcomed him onto the team!
And as if that wasn’t enough… he’s just done session vocals for an album that went into the Top 5 on the iTunes Classical charts the week it was released, and in April ’17 is recording an album with four-part jazz vocal group 52nd Street. Busy busy!
Tutor Alan Richardson joined us back in January, when he was still appearing in the UK national tour of Chicago the Musical. Having subsequently been out to Singapore with the show, he’s about to hit rehearsals for the national tour of The All-Male Mikado under Sasha Regan’s award-winning direction. The tour starts on April 18th at The Theatre Royal, Bath. If you’ve not seen one of the ‘all male’ productions we recommend that you go!
Meanwhile Senior Tutor and part of the Registration Team, Cordelia Lewis (aka Givvi Flynn) continues to rock-star her way through life recording and performing with indie-pop band The Dowling Poole, who have done very-nicely-thank-you with their last two albums and are currently working on a third. Givvi has also been seen rocking out with The Wildhearts in recent times, including being very rock n roll by breaking her arm during sound check, nipping out to A & E to get it plastered up, then returning to do the gig in the evening. Dave Grohl eat your heart out.
Tutor Chris Passey, as well as being in possession of a mighty voice and serious teaching chops, is a choir-master extraordinaire who has recently provided choirs for Josh Groban (UK tour) and Russell Watson (Songs of Praise). Chris has recently been out to Slovakia to study conducting under the tutelage of Simon Chalk, who is the Chief Conductor of the Slovak Sinfonietta and Artistic Director of the Southern Sinfonia. Simon has also worked extensively with internationally-renowned vocal group Il Divo.
Tutor Cathy Crompton not only works as a professional singer, but is also a choir-leader for the organisation Got to Sing. A firm believer in making singing accessible to everyone, Cathy combines her great pedagogical knowledge and infectious enthusiasm to bring the joy of singing to hundreds of amateur singers across The Midlands. A highly-trained singer and teacher, she’s one of the newest members of the team and a genuine asset.
Senior Tutor Christine Evans is a professional singer-songwriter and guitarist who gigs regularly and also leads a choir in her home town. Equally at home teaching in person or online, Christine has been with us longer than any other tutor and we’re not letting her go! Christine is also a qualified pharmacist and is a positive fount of information when it comes to what works and what is the stuff of myth and legend when it comes to treatment for poorly voices.
Finally the Boss, Ria Keen has been busy since November writing the vocal arrangements and providing session vocals for her friend Jon Moses’ new album, and is looking forward to recording an album with 52nd Street (for whom she writes the complex and jazz-tastic arrangements) in April, alongside both Dan and Chris. She’s also looking forward to going back to work with the students at The Birmingham Theatre School for their Graduation Show this year.
So as you see, our teachers are not ‘just teachers’ – whatever that means – but also industry-savvy professionals with wide-ranging skills and (apparently) days with more than 24 hours in them! Students at The Voice College cite the tutors as one of the most important elements of their courses, because the tutors give so much of themselves to the work.
So if you’re thinking about training as a singing teacher, or taking a course to supplement or formalise your existing skills, why not have a look at our website, or come and say hi on Twitter or Facebook? We really have got a course for everyone, but more importantly we’ve got the tutors who’ll help you to succeed!