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About James H.
Teaching singing is a huge passion of mine as working with every voice is different. I teach a huge range of pupils of different ages and varying abilities but with different interests. This can be recapping and improving basic technique, working towards exams, a single concert or an audition for a drama school. I use the Estill model in my teaching and specialise in musical theatre but I do teach and work with people performing many different styles. A basic and fundamental understanding of how the voice works supports all styles of singing.
I have been working as a singing teacher since 2012 determined to provide young people and musical theatre performers with an excellent education in how their voices work and how to use them efficiently. I am a supporter of the Estill model and attend regular courses led by Anne Marie Speed to use in my teaching but I also call upon other techniques I’ve learnt from other teachers and researchers. As well as Anne Marie Speed I follow advice from Ross Campbell, Mary Hammond and Mary King who teach on the musical theatre course at the Royal Academy of Music.
My experience involves working with children privately and in group lessons focusing on musical awareness and developing their sense of pitch and singing as an ensemble (if in a group). I’ve led children’s choirs and do a lot of work for youth theatre groups providing support for when boys and girls start to go through their voice change. I do a lot of work especially with young boy’s voices; supporting them through the change and helping them find their “new” voice.
Other experience includes working with musical theatre and acting students with developing technique and interpreting material. I offer support working towards auditions for drama schools and other vocational courses and assisting professional performers prepare new material for their auditions. Past students have gone on to study at Arts Ed, ALRA, GSA, Mountview, London Studio Centre, Chichester, Italia Conti, The Brit School and the Urdang Academy. Others have appeared in West End shows such as The Lion King, School of Rock, Thriller, Matilda and Mary Poppins.
For students wanting to take exams in singing and musical theatre I do that too. Most of them take Trinity College exams as their syllabus and exam experience in my opinion is excellent. The singing exams are flexible to suit any pupil and the range of repertoire to perform is huge. Previous students have also taken London College of Music exams in Music Theatre and Rockschool vocal exams with a 100% pass rate across all three boards.
Normally lessons are 55 minutes long but for younger children I tend to offer 40 minute lessons. I am flexible regarding timings; some pupils have an hour and a half or two hours depending on their requirements and preference. If you have a piano at home or there is space for me to bring a digital piano I can travel to you for a small extra fee or you can come to my studio in Kingston upon Thames.
I aim to provide all my students with the tools to enable them to understand their voices and how to get the best out of them including how to recognise vocal problems. All my lessons are tailored to the student and their needs or requirements.
Previously I’ve worked for Italia Conti Arts Centre, Academy of Performance Training, The Ultimate Voice, Stagecoach Theatre Arts Schools, British Theatre Academy, Richmond Theatre & Laine Theatre Arts.