1. How and where did you start conducting? My first attempt at conducting was when I was 10, my violin teacher allowed me a go with his orchestra. A few years later whilst I was at Chetham’s the chamber choir was without a conductor – I was conducting this when I was 14.
2. What’s been your favourite conducting experience to date? This is difficult. There is nothing quite like the journey of the Bach St Matthew Passion culminating in that amazing final chorus.
3. Choirs get asked to sing in some fairly strange places! What’s been your strangest conducting experience? Stockhausen at St Lukes with the BBC Singers – in robes and with Tibetan bowls one of which I managed to drop on the floor!
4. If you could choose any performer in the world to sing with, who would it be, and why? Anne Sofie von Otter, would love to have the opportunity of working with her.
5. Aside from your own event in Voices Now, what event would you recommend to your friends? Sing Up and Go Sing – Primary School children – the singers of tomorrow
Rebecca Lodge – BBC Singers
1. How and where did you start singing? I’ve always sung – first at primary school in the choir, where we were very lucky to have a fantastic music teacher. Having a great music department at secondary school also meant that I was lucky enough to experience opera at an early age – we performed Hansel and Gretel which helped me to realise how much I loved singing!
2. What’s been your favourite singing experience to date? I have been lucky enough to have many amazing musical experiences – with the BBC Singers we toured Japan, and it was incredible to see how music bridged two such different cultures. For me though, the biggest thrill is seeing how singing frees and unites people from all walks of life and gives a true sense of achievement.
3. Choirs get asked to sing in some fairly strange places! What’s been your strangest singing experience? The most unusual place would have to be Wormwood Scrubs Prison! I was working with a group who gave workshops and concerts in several prisons, and I’ll never forget the sound of the gates closing behind us. Or how relieved I felt when they opened again!
4. If you could choose any performer in the world to sing with, who would it be, and why? I would love to duet with Renee Fleming – she is such a wonderful performer and it would be great to sing some jazz with her too!
5. Aside from your own event in Voices Now, what event would you recommend to your friends? I would love to hear the Roundhouse Choir and the Roundhouse Experimental Choir on Thursday evening. Their music is so different from what I normally do that I think it will be a very exciting evening….