photo of Sarah Simmonds

Sun 3rd Sept 2017 2.15pm: SARAH SIMMONDS (soprano) with SARAH MURPHY (piano) with songs by Schumann, Vaughan Williams and Cole Porter

Sarah Simmonds (soprano) with Sarah Murphy (piano)

Programme to include Schumann’s “Frauenliebe und Leben” and songs by Vaughan Williams, John Ireland, Debussy and Cole Porter.

Sarah Simmonds (soprano)photo of Sarah Simmonds

Sarah began her singing career as lead singer in a rock band (Fatal Charm), touring the UK in the 80s and 90s supporting major acts, recording numerous sessions for Radio One and appearing live on Channel 4’s ground-breaking show ‘The Tube’ several times.
She then decided to concentrate more on her classical technique and trained with Pamela Cook MBE (Cantamus) whilst gaining a degree in Music at the University of Nottingham.

A 3-year stint with the renowned a cappella group ‘The Swingle Singers’ followed, during which she toured the world performing with top class conductors and orchestras in some of the most prestigious venues including La Scala, Milan.

On returning to Nottingham, she continued as a session singer recording many film soundtracks at Abbey Road Studios including Star Wars, Harry Potter and Shrek. She also performed in L.A and France with renowned contemporary vocal group ‘Synergy’ and sang backing vocals for Jarvis Cocker at the Royal Festival Hall in London. In 2013, she shared the stage with Bafta award-winning actress Olivia Colman on a production of ‘The Snow Queen’ at London’s Cadogan Hall. In 2015, she sang backing vocals for Anna Calvi at the David Byrne-curated Meltdown Festival on the South Bank in London.

She teaches singing privately and at the University of Nottingham, and continues to perform classical recitals, pop/rock/jazz and big band gigs. She is currently recording a new album with her band Fatal Charm.

Sarah Murphy (piano)photo of Sarah Murphy

Sarah studied at the University of Nottingham, and graduated with first class honours in 1999. Whilst at Nottingham she established herself as a soloist, performing in numerous solo recitals at the Djanogly Recital Hall and throughout the region. She also performed concertos in Nottingham and Leicester with local orchestras. After graduating, Sarah went to Manchester to study for a postgraduate performing degree at the Royal Northern College of Music, receiving a scholarship from the Countess of Munster Trust – whilst there, she extended her research activities, looking into the piano works of Leos Janacek, and travelling to the Czech Republic to present at conferences and study original manuscripts. She also continued performing as a soloist, and formed a partnership with a baritone, accompanying him in many recitals throughout the country. As well as performing, she also continued her research work, and completed her doctorate at the University of Cardiff in 2010. Since then, she has taught at both Chetham’s School of Music and the RNCM, and regularly teaches on the Chetham’s International Festival for Pianists, teaching piano, analysis, and giving performance workshops.