Jessica Crawley, alto choral scholar

Jessica Crawley, alto choral scholar

An interview with Jessica Crawley, alto choral scholar

Jessica Crawley, alto choral scholar

How did you get into singing?
I had singing lessons in my early teens following a less successful stint at piano. My school had great choirs and I grew up performing in local/school musicals before going on to study musical theatre.

What’s been your best or most enjoyable singing/playing experience to date?
My favourite experience so far has been singing in Kylie Minogue concerts at the Royal Albert Hall. My dad was very jealous – he’s a big fan!

What are you up to now?
I sing with the Southern Spirit Singers and work for Perform where I teach drama, dance and singing to children. I’ve also gone back to the piano lessons – so far so good.

Do you have a favourite piece of choral music? Why that one?
My favourite piece of choral music is Northern Lights by Erik Esenvalds. It tells the story of seeing the northern lights for the first time; ‘the world is on fire’. The choir sings alongside tuned crystal glasses that produce magical, shimmering tones – just as I’d imagine the lights to sound.

Oscar Hansen, bass choral scholar

How did you get into singing?

I first got into singing (and music, more generally) when I was around 16 years old. I was lucky enough to be at a secondary school – Tiffin School in Kingston upon Thames – which has an excellent choir, director, and music department. Initially, joining the choir was something I saw as an academic and social necessity for my music A-level, but quickly I realised I really enjoyed all of the aspects of singing in a choir: the music-making, the community, the repertoire, the tours, the many pints, etc. Since then I have always regularly  sung with a choir and have also developed my solo classical repertoire.

What’s been your best or most enjoyable singing/playing experience to date?

There are too many to count! I’ve always loved choir tours and performing solos in recitals, but perhaps my most enjoyable singing experience lies outside of my choral career: playing Mack the Knife in a student production of Threepenny Opera whilst at university in Oxford will always be a favourite memory of mine.

What are you up to now?

Having just graduated this summer, I’m currently starting my first full-time job after university, working in sales for an intellectual property software company in Chiswick. Around this I’m keeping up my singing and learning to drive!

Do you have a favourite piece of choral music? Why that one?

Tough choice. One of my top choral pieces is Belshazzar’s Feast by William Walton. It’s a completely over-the-top setting of an already very colourful biblical text. For me it combines the best in English symphonic writing with huge choral parts and a fantastically lusty baritone solo. It sounds like it could be the soundtrack to a Star Wars film.

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