The second half of 2015 turned out to be incredibly busy. So busy I didn’t even have a moment to write about it! So, here is a whistle-stop tour of the rest of 2015!
After a superb couple of weeks on the Isle of Skye with InnerSound, I went straight into the Oxenfoord International Summer School for Singers and Accompanists. I had a great week taking part in the course, as well as running the daily warm-up sessions (LOTS of fun and games) and helping out with the general administration.
September saw the return of Endelienta Scholars to dear old St. Endellion for another superb concert. We really pushed ourselves with a bigger programme, a bigger choir and a bigger sound: and it was a huge success. We had David Fisk join us at our rehearsal weekend to capture some working-shots, and they are superb, do have a look on the Scholars’ website. We had a wonderfully appreciative audience at St. Endellion, and we all really enjoyed getting to grips with the music- some of which was quite tricky! I was thrilled to be the Soprano soloist for the Vaughan-Williams Mass in G, which I had not performed before, but had long enjoyed listening to. It was so special to perform it for the first time with some of my closest friends in one of my favourite performance venues. The spirit of Endellion continues to inspire!
October was a month of hard work and preparation: I had to get in my applications for post-graduate music courses and prepare all the rep I needed. I spent my days travelling around different parts of London having consultation sessions and coaching sessions, trying to get everything ready for December- the month of audition doom!
I also took part in some incredibly rewarding workshops, organised by Fiona Dobie for those she knew were preparing for auditions. The first was a Singing and Acting workshop day with Fiona and Jacqui Crago- it was quite an intense day of soul searching to really get to grips with the poetry and meaning of our songs/arias, but so rewarding. Fiona also ran a workshop day on Feldonkreis, which is a little like Alexander Technique in motion. It was a super way to become more centred, more in tune with your body and how best to adjust your posture to help with technique. Perfect audition prep!
I was delighted to return to my old school, Loretto, for a performance of Rossini’s Petite Messe Sollenelle at the choral society’s annual Come and Sing. I also sang the Soprano solo in Mendelssohn’s Hear my prayer, which I had first learned during my days as a music scholar at Loretto. It was a great weekend: so much fun and superb music making. Once again I was joined by dear friends on the soloists podium, and it meant so much to work with some of my old music teachers. Along with my headmaster, Michael Mavor, they provided the encouragement and challenges that have put my feet on paths I couldn’t even have dreamed of. I owe them so much for the opportunities I was given at school. It was a joy to return to making music in the Chapel where it all began. I also spent a day working with some of the young singers currently at the school- from 2nd form to upper 6th, it was an honour to work with such bright young students. They really committed to the work and took on so many new things in just one day- we gave a short informal recital at the end of the day and I was so proud of each and every one of them.
As part of my preparation for auditions, I gave a couple of recitals in London. One lunchtime recital at St. Bride’s with John Cuthbert, and one evening event in St. Giles’ Cripplegate which I shared with my Mezzo-Friend from Oxenfoord, Charisse. Alice turner played so brilliantly, and we were all touched by how many friends and family came to support us.
Then, audition season. They all went really well- and I look forward to announcing my plans for next academic year very soon- watch this space!