Guest post for Uncle Spike’s Adventures – “The Psycho Soprano!” – by Charlotte Hoather

January 15, 2014 — 49 Comments


“The Psycho Soprano!” – by Charlotte Hoather


First published on Sunday 12 January, 2014 by Uncle Spike on “Uncle Spike’s Adventures”

In this post, it’s Uncle Spike’s intention to bring a bit of much-needed ‘culture’ to the blog… and so without further ado: this week’s special Guest Writer is none other than Charlotte Hoather

I would like to think that I’m on a par with Charlotte with her ‘Done that, got the t-shirt’ grasp on life (as if), but… this young woman happens to be a seriously accomplished soprano (among other talents). However, she might also be a bit of a nutter too. So yep, about right to represent The Spikey’s this week….

Read more …….

“How I Was Almost Thrown Out Of My Own Concert!”

When Uncle Spike asked me to be a guest writer on Uncle Spike’s Adventures my immediate thought was ‘Oh no! I’m not witty enough’, then the daredevil in me kicked in so here goes.

My thought process:

I could write about the snake adventure (but that wasn’t in line with the brief). What about the terrifying reverse bungee horror (the mistake was deciding to do it in the first place). Or maybe the white water rafting incident in Slovenia where health and safety was dare I say lost in translation!

Charlotte 2

I know the freezing cold high school windsurfing lesson; the long jump session where I ended up face down eating sand; the cheerleading experience where I immediately volunteered to be the flyer (best not tell Mum about that one!).


Charlotte 1


No, there was only one story worthy enough for Spikey’s blog:

Lethalogica © Michael Adamson


Charlotte 3


A couple of years ago I agreed to be the soprano for a group of talented composition students at the Junior Royal Northern College of Music who were all in their final year before going off to University. I hadn’t realised quite how adventurous these guys would be with my vocals! Michael had composed an unusual piece for a four piece string section and me called ‘Lethalogica’. I spent weeks learning the piece and was excited to do it.

During rehearsal the lead tutor decided it would be even more amusing and dramatic if I started my section seated in amongst the audience at the back of the theatre. I’d back combed my hair put on a costume I’d borrowed from my High School, but in my excitement I forgot to put on my hat.

Charlotte 4

This is the sort of look I was going for 😉

As the musicians started to play they were on strict instructions to ignore me and continue to play whatever happened! It was a big audience and I noticed a couple of the composition tutors from the senior school had sat down further along on my row. My parents were in front of me and I just thought ‘they’re going to love this!’

I stood up and began to sing along in wails, clicks, mutters, high notes, and words made up by Michael as I shuffled my way to the end of the row forcing the audience to their feet to let me pass, getting louder as the strings did. The two senior school tutors didn’t stand for me, tutting their disapproval as I passed.

As I began to walk down the steps a lady jumped out and grabbed my arm to try to persuade me to sit down, she thought I was losing my marbles. She asked me if I had any pills I needed to take, oh my what to do I carried on singing, then in a break under my breath I told her ‘I’m in the show’. ‘No dear’ she said, ‘you’re not, please sit down’. The next minute a man from the other side of the aisle jumped up and grabbed my other arm; they were literally going to drag me out, my feet left the floor for a moment. I threw my head back and sang louder, I tried to kick his shin and lowered my weight causing them to pause. I let out a top A and at that moment the lady realised who I was, I was singing for her son too. I glanced over at the Head of Juniors and she was holding back two first aiders from coming to get me.


Charlotte 5

I broke free stumbling on to the stage. All this time the musicians played on magnificently. I purposefully sang all the words and sounds Michael had crafted whilst barging straight through two of the music stands sending them and the scores flying and still they continued to play. I reached my climax and without a word just walked out of the theatre.

My parents still choke laughing about this today as all of the people in on it burst into applause everyone else joined in but were talking about what the heck had just happened to each other because my name hadn’t appeared in the program and I didn’t go back in for a bow.

I just can’t write down how funny this was I guess you may have to have been there? The musicians thought it was hilarious and couldn’t believe they’d managed to play throughout the piece but most importantly Michael and his tutor were really happy!

After the show I got lots of compliments – perhaps I do crazy a bit too well!

written by: Charlotte Hoather

I found a copy of my score and instructions from Michael to give you a flavour of what I was singing.  If you click on the picture you should be able to load a larger image 🙂



49 responses to Guest post for Uncle Spike’s Adventures – “The Psycho Soprano!” – by Charlotte Hoather


    Thank you for such a great post. Our little blog was honoured…


    Congratulations Charlotte and Uncle Spike !!! it’s excellent !!!!

    Charlotte, you are really…really….you know I want to say ;-))

    All the best for you


      Bonjour Pascal, I found the score Michael wrote last night so I’ll upload my instructions and what I was singing might be clearer 😉
      Best wishes have a nice day, off to college soon.


    Charlotte, I’m trying very hard to get past the image of a potentially failed cheerleading move resulting in a face-plant (and possible imprint) on the soft ground below. Sing on, sing up! 🙂


      I know! I’m a little less daredeviley now (I don’t think that’s even a word sorry). I only did it as a new experience on the round robin day trip from school.
      I asked my Mum if I could join the club in Sale near Manchester and I got an immediate ‘no!’
      Best wishes


    Charlotte, this episode sounds a bit like ‘improvisational comedy’ only with music. Perhaps the audience thought the two people grabbing your arms were part of the act?

    As a sociologist, I learned about ethnomethodology, or the study of the reaction of observers to a disruption of a ‘structured activity (say a concert?). Perhaps there was a sociologist or anthropologist in the audience watching the whole affair? Dianne


      I used to do a lot of improv at my drama club I loved it.
      There were only the musicians and about four others in on the piece.
      The lady that jumped up to help me is such a lovely person, she was apologising afterwards and I said, ‘no, I love it that you just wanted to help’ and if I wasn’t in the show would have probably just sat with her she was so kind.
      I’ll look up ‘ethnomethodology’ sounds interesting.
      Thanks Dianne, all my best wishes


    Hahahahaha! xD Oh dear! I can imagine what this must have looked like to the audience. Hilarious! xD


      Hi Cecilia, at the time they were silent, at the end of the song there was no applause all the time I was walking out. My parents knew I was in that piece and wondered why my name wasn’t in the program but both felt it was very effective.
      We do chuckle about the look on my face when I thought my performance was going to end abruptly ;0
      Hope your new year has started well.
      Best wishes


    Now that would have been worth witnessing! Would I be with the “lost her medication” crowd or “Wow! She just sang a top A!” 🙂


      I just assumed everyone would recognise me, I think the hat would have helped to show I was in character but I’m not sure what I would have done as an audience member either.

      Best wishes


    This sounds like one of the interactive pieces in this year’s Turner Prize.


    Hi Charlotte, youhave a great voice!! 🙂


    That is so cool story!


    Congrats! You beat out those pretty awesome cheerleaders!


      When I was at High School, once each year we were asked to choose an activity, I always chose something that I didn’t take part in already, to attend an all-day training session. My dance training and general fitness at that time was really good so cheer-leading would have been a good mix if I’d had the time free. It’s a pity they don’t do it at football matches over here I’d love to watch professional cheerleaders at half time.

      Best wishes


    Wow – that’s an awesome story!


      I really wish there was a video, I think I’ve got an audio recording but I’m not sure. I found my page of instructions and score last night so I’ve added it to the post.

      Best wishes


      I loved my time at the Junior Royal Northern College of Music on Saturdays, I learnt so much there and met so many great artists it really expanded my musical understanding.

      Best wishes


    Sopranos always do crazy a bit too well… Interesting story, I’ll be sure to stop by again sometime.


      Ha ha ha, oh yeah! One of my blogger friends called it the ‘Sopranoverse’ because we live on another dimension. I wonder if it’s got something to do with being continually bumped off in Operas!

      Best wishes


    Amazing post!!! 😀


      Thank you Raphael, Uncle Spike likes to challenge me, his challenge for this piece was ‘screw ups and how to survive them’ and this performance so easily could have gone very badly. I won’t tell you what his latest challenge is because one day I just might do it 😉 he he

      Best wishes


    What a brilliant story!!! Just brilliant! Thanks for sharing.


      I’m glad you enjoyed my story. I smile just thinking about it and my friends playing beautifully trying to keep their faces straight when they saw my predicament on the stairs.

      Best wishes


    A lady of many talents. loved the read.


    That is too much, so cool! Awesome!


    Such courage, Charlotte!


      Thanks Hilary I really enjoyed doing it but there was a moment when I really wondered if the audience were enjoying it, afterwards people were lovely to me 😉
      Best wishes


    I think you’re ready for this Haydn arrangement, if you haven’t already heard it:


    This was quite a story and very comical at the same time. The show must go on and you certainly did carry it. Great job!


    That’s hilarious!!! I don’t know if I would have kept singing like you did! Gutsy, aren’t you!! 🙂


    I loved this – thank you so much for sharing 🙂


    That’s awesome. I love shows where one of the performers pops up out of the audience. Bonus points if they’re doing something wacky. 😀


    You know Charlotte, when I used to watch and listen to you rehearsing this song with the clicks, mutters, high notes I couldn’t imagine how it would all come together. Reading your blog about it makes me roll around laughing, (not always a good thing at my age!) I would have paid to see it. You are truly an inspiration.


    Spot on with this write-up, I really believe this site needs a lot more attention. I’ll probably
    be returning too read through more, thanks for thee information!

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  1. Just a quick note! | Tripping the Light Fantastic - January 17, 2014

    […] recent post from a blog I follow (Charlotte Hoather) that was written as a guest blog for another blog – Uncle Spikes Adventures – hade me […]

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