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Cymraeg

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South Wales

Jo

Jo Fowler

Choir Leader, Barry

Jo’s musical interest began at a young age when she began playing the piano at the age of 6, and went on to learn the flute and saxophone. She studied music and drama at the University of Birmingham, where she specialized in flute performance.

Jo has always thrown herself into musical activities, including conducting the University saxophone ensemble, setting up flute ensembles,  performing many Gilbert and Sullivan operettas, and teaching flute and saxophone privately. Her first experience of leading choirs was when she taught music in a school in Nepal.

Jo has always loved singing, and learnt to sing herself through being in choirs which have given her so much joy and boosted her confidence. She is a firm believer that singing makes you feel good.

Jo says: ‘I’ve always wanted to share my love of music with those that might never have experienced it, and the sing with us choirs are a perfect way to do that. I am so excited to be a part of changing people’s lives for the better through singing, which everyone can enjoy!’ 

 Iori

Iori Haugen

Choir Leader, Merthyr Tydfil and Pontypridd

Having gown up in the sleepy Welsh village of Rhandirmwyn, and attended welsh speaking school Ysgol Gynradd Llangadog, it was unavoidable for Iori to became interested and immersed in music from a young age.

Iori has had experience working with orchestras, choirs and bands of all different styles and genres of music, working mainly as a percussionist/drummer and a singer. He had his first professional gig at age 14 and hasn’t stopped since. In 2010 Iori became a founding member of Only Boys Aloud (OBA). It’s from here that his passion for choral singing and conducting really took off, and as a result has been given the opportunity to perform on stage and on screen all around the UK, appearing on shows such as ‘The One Show’, ‘Britain’s Got Talent’ and ‘This Morning’ to name a but a few.

5 years on, Iori has since moved to conduct his own choirs including Only Boys Aloud Alumni (an associated offshoot of OBA) and has taken his own choirs on to various TV and stage performances. Iori also works with Only Boys Aloud as a deputy choir leader and mentor.

Iori says "I can’t believe I finally have the chance to do what I love for a living. I love watching choirs and individual voices develop. To be apart of such a fantastic community full of inspiring and heartwarming people is really exciting and uplifting. I love it! " 

Emma

Emma Picton

Choir Leader, Cardiff South choir

Emma was born and grew up in Splott, Cardiff and has been brought up to sing! Emma studied for her Bachelor of Music degree and Post Graduate Certificate in Education (P.G.C.E) in London before going on to teach Secondary Music.

Emma has performed as a Soloist and Choirister for many years and has been lucky enough to sing at the Wales Millennium Centre, St. Davids Hall, Millenium Stadium, Westminster Abbey, Madrid Cathedral and St. Mark’s Cathedral in Venice.   Prior to joining Tenovus, Emma worked closely with the charity through her role at Sing and Inspire and she has therefore been leading Tenovus choirs since 2010.

Emma says “I love working with the Sing With Us choirs! I really try to reflect Tenovus’ values (Creative, Respectful, Inspiring, Bold, Supportive) in every Sing With Us session to make them as enjoyable as possible”    

Ruth New

Ruth Morris

Choir Leader, Bridgend and Swansea

Ruth is from Aberystwyth and has been a passionate musician all her life.  Ruth has completed both her undergraduate and master's degrees in Music at Cardiff University.

Ruth's professional musical experience is varied as both a singer and as a saxophonist. She has toured and performed at world-class venues and events, including Notre Dame Cathedral (Paris), the San Sebastian Jazz Festival (Spain), and The Hay Festival 2012.  As a session musician Ruth has worked alongside the likes of Charlotte Church, The School and Shan Cothi and she has performed as a regular member of local Indie group  'Albatross Archive'.

Ruth joined Tenovus Cancer Care with a passion for bringing music into the heart of the community.

Alicia

Alicia Stark

Choir Leader, Cardiff North and Abergavenny choirs.

It was Alicia’s parents who decided she should start piano lessons at the age of 5, and she’s so glad they did! She quickly grew to love music, both listening to and performing it, and singing became a huge part of her life after her first solo at age 8 (Kermit the Frog’s ‘It’s Not That Easy Being Green’ in a school musical revue).

Born in Canada and raised in the United States, Alicia has an undergraduate degree in Music Education from Shorter University in Rome, Georgia. She has a Masters and a PhD from Cardiff University; her PhD research was about cartoon, puppet, and hologram bands, so maybe that Kermit the Frog thing had a bigger impact than she realised.

Alicia has conducted and participated in choirs around the world, and has taught music in the US, UK, and Liberia. Her biggest passion is musical theatre, and she has worked as music director on both professional and amateur productions in the US and the UK. Alicia debuted the role of Fanny Mendelssohn Hensel in the world premiere of ‘Your True Calling,’ an operetta focussing on the lives of female composers throughout history.

Alicia says, "Singing in choirs is such good fun, and I’m thrilled to be able to help introduce people to the feeling. Whether you’ve been singing all your life, or feel like you can’t carry a tune in a bucket, there’s a place for you at the Sing with Us choirs. If you’re in the area, give us a try! I can’t wait to meet you and make fab music with you!"