Today I have been enjoying the September sunshine and preparing for a short trip to Antwerp, Brussels to take part in a masterclass tomorrow morning.
I’m getting quite excited at the proposition of moving to London next week and the new challenges and opportunities that await for me when I get there. I have had so many wonderful experiences and amazing adventures during my four years at the RCS and have enjoyed sharing them with you all. It has been such a treat to read your feedback and to see my world through your eyes. Your support and encouragement have helped me to reach this new fork in the road and though I don’t know what is down the path I have chosen to follow I do hope that you will all be there with me every step of the way.
Pascal Barnier created this beautiful picture for the cover of the album
Before I left Glasgow, there were a couple of projects that I have been working on throughout the year that I wanted to finish off. The first was to record the “Haugtussa” song cycle by Edvard Grieg for release this month, and the second was something totally different, you could almost say that it is entirely bonkers.
Earlier this year I took part in an English Song competition which required me to perform both songs and spoken words. One quote in the prospectus caught my eye and got me thinking:
“to encourage the communication of English words, in singing and in speech, with clarity, understanding and imagination”.
What if you took the text from a famous piece of literature and tried to mingle in some English song to help enhance the telling of the story. I found what in my mind was just the perfect story, one from my childhood that always conjured up vivid images which danced through my imagination.
So I got to work reading through the text to find passages that I thought worked well with songs that I had in mind. With the work complete I sent off my application and following an audition in London, I was delighted to be chosen to perform in the final. Though I did not make the final three, as I had enjoyed the project so much I decided that rather than leave it there I would record the pieces and release them on a separate album, just in case there was anyone as crazy as me out there who wanted to listen to it.
On both projects, I was accompanied by George Todica, who over the past three years has helped me immensely by accompanying me in competitions, auditions, and my exams. He even went the extra mile and agreed to take part in an impromptu photo shoot at the Glasgow Botanical Gardens. It was great fun hunting down the costumes and then dressing up for the photos. It was as if a childhood ambition had come true, walking through the gardens we were both stopped by passers-by who wanted photographs with us, I was finally living the dream, it felt like being a Disney Princess for an afternoon.
I am sure that you have guessed by now which story I picked.
Before I sign off there is one more huge thank you that I must pass on, I have been given an award by the Kathleen Trust towards the cost of my first year studies at the Royal College of Music. Without such an award and the generous support from all of you who bought copies of my first album, it would be impossible for me to continue on my magical journey.