Kate O'Connell

Vocal tuition for health, wellbeing, confidence and performance technique

Singing for health, wellbeing and performance . . .
Increase your confidence, build community, develop creativity, and have fun !
 

I help children, teenagers and adults in private classes and groups to sing, develop their creativity, learn to perform better, and how to use the breath to maximum effect.
Side effects can be: better posture and increased self awareness and sense of wellbeing. As a Natural Voice Practitioner, I can help you free up your voice and express yourself to your full potential.
›  About Kate

“ Kate has helped me unlock years of closed doors through the amazing range of methods she has used to help me find my voice again. Every lesson has been a journey and much like therapy. I see singing so differently now and love the idea that my body is an instrument. My voice can now do things I never imagined it could.
Thank you Kate for everything! ”   Laura (26)

 “ Kate has helped me in pushing myself to my real potential, in fun and creative ways. A colourful and vibrant teacher ! ”   Esther (16)


›  More testimonials

Let's make this a wonderful year, full of joyful harmony, on all levels. My focus is on the health and wellbeing, heart-opening and community aspects of singing and using the voice. I am keen to sing songs with uplifting messages.

I am offering Workshops and weekly Choirs in both Moray and Highland. From drop-in Singing Group to Community Choir Leadership Training, I hope you will find something to suit you.

I am also available for private singing lessons for performance and for health and wellbeing.

From October 2017 – March 2018 I will be working in Fortrose on the Black Isle on Monday to Wednesday, and in Forres as usual on Thursday and Friday.

With blessings, Kate

Young Waters

My son Liam is part of a neo folk combo called Young Waters. He is on double bass and backing vocals. Of all his bands, this one is the most likely to achieve success and recognition. In fact they are already drawing attention. I know how hard they work and I find their music quite hauntingly beautiful and quirkily magical.
Young Waters debut album
Last year they won the New Shoots competition at the Bath Folk Festival (see YouTube) which resulted in a day's recording at Realworld Studios (Peter Gabriel’s studio). They worked super hard together and recorded a whole album's worth of material in that one day!

Young Waters debut album Since then they have been in talks with a potential manager, and a publishing company is showing great interest. The band have been saving from gigs, but really do need some extra help to finish and release the album (their first studio album), so recently they have launched a crowd funder.

Liam feels that at the moment they are at a tipping point where they actually stand a chance of going somewhere with the band. Any support will be gratefully received, and if you could possibly share their campaign with any friends or networks you know that might be interested that would really help them.

›  igg.me/at/youngwaters
›  youtube.com/watch?v=JPJLkF95rjk
›  youngwatersband.co.uk

Videos

 “Something Inside So Strong”

by Labbi Siffre
Too Many Kooks, 2010, in the Universal Hall Findhorn
›  Play video
›  About Too Many Kooks + More videos

 “Everything's Gonna Be Allright”

Short video of Kate O'Connell with gospel singer Kathy Bullock and workshop choir, Easter 2013, at the EarthSings event in the Universal Hall, Findhorn.
›  Play video

 “Peace In Our Time”

Written by Nick Prater at the time of the big anti-war demonstrations in 2004. Kate leads this Natural Voice anthem. Part of The Forres Big Choir 10th birthday Big Sing, January 2014.
›  Play video

 “ Hope Lies Here ”

The finale of the "You Can't Eat Money" concert on 2 November 2012 in the Universal Hall, Findhorn.
›  Play video
›  Info: You Can't Eat Money

Radio

Health benefits of singing Radio Scotland

 "Personal Best"/19 December 2016  (28 mins/mp3)

Radio Scotland programme on the health benefits of singing. Includes Kate giving reporter Suzie Beaumont a singing lesson.

News

17/18/19 November

Community Choir Leadership

Weekend training course
with Bill Henderson & Kate O’Connell


17/18/19 November
Newbold House, Forres, Moray
£250 (includes dinners Friday/Saturday, lunches Saturday/Sunday, and daytime refreshments)

This unique course is led by two of Scotland’s most experienced community choir leaders, and is designed to give you the tools and skills needed to develop yourself as a community choir leader or to bring more singing into your work.

Topics explored will include:
— Developing one's natural voice
— Principles of natural voice singing
— How to teach a song
— Structuring of a singing session
— Group management
— Repertoire
— Musical technique and rhythm
— Singing for Health, Well-being and social transformation
— Improvisation and creating your own song

More info ›  www.billsmusic.co.uk

HummingBirds

Women's Singing Group in Strathpeffer, Ross-shire


Wednesdays 7pm

Location: various private houses
£6 per session
 

Autumn term starts 20 September

A variety of inspirational songs from around the world. Gospel, trad folk, pop, contemporary compositions ... if we like it we’ll sing it. No expertize needed, just a joy in singing and a willingness to have a go.

Info  ›  Contact me

Sing for pleasure! And for health and wellbeing!

Inverness singing group now open to everyone with a long-term condition


Mondays  18 September, 2 October, 16 October, 30 October, 13 November, 27 November, 11 December; 2pm – 3pm
Charleston Academy Community Annexe, Inverness
£4.00 per session, per person

 After a successful start in 2016, the singing group for people with Parkinson’s, their friends, families and carers is now open to everyone with a long-term condition. The sessions are led by renowned local voice coach Kate O'Connell, whose enthusiasm and belief that everyone can sing makes these classes a delight for everyone who comes along.

Cathy Orr, Parkinson’s UK Local Development Manager, said: “We are delighted to be continuing this class in Inverness and want as many people as possible to come along. The singing sessions are great fun as well as providing real benefits for people with a long-term condition. There is also a strong social aspect, and lots of people find that singing makes them feel better, which is really helpful for those who have feelings of stress, anxiety or depression.”

The classes are open to everyone affected by a long-term condition. No experience or singing ability necessary, just a willingness to join in and have fun. There is no need to pre-book.

For further information please contact Cathy Orr on 03442 259831 or by email on corr@parkinsons.org.uk, or contact Kate.

Workshops

August

Unicorn Village Camps

I am a regular teacher at the Unicorn Voice Camp and Unicorn Dancing Spirit Camp, near Bath, England, every August.

Voice Camp (Saturday 5 – Sunday 13 August) is the number one destination for singers in community choirs across Britain, and offers sessions with many of Britain's finest natural voice teachers.
›  www.unicornvillagecamps.co.uk/voice-camp-overview

Dancing Spirit Camp (Saturday 19 – Sunday 27 August) is the equivalent for The Dances of Universal Peace, which consist of spiritual mantras from all the world's religions with prayerful movement.
›  www.unicornvillagecamps.co.uk/dancing-spirit-camp-overview

9+10 September

Be the Change!

A Life Affirming Workshop using Voice and Movement for Healing


 Saturday 9 September 10 am — Sunday 10 September 2pm
The Heart Centre, Dean House Lane, Luddenden (near Hebden Bridge)

I am very excited to offer this weekend in West Yorkshire along with renowned teacher of The Dances of Universal Peace, Jilani Cordelia Prescott. We meet regularly at Unicorn Camps and decided we had something to offer together. The form of this weekend came out of an inspiring conversation about what we really believe in. We hope you will be inspired to join us.

Price (includes 3 meals) is £135 when full payment received before 31 July, then £155. Maximum 16 places – book early! Full payment or £40 deposit secures your place. Please enquire if you need financial support to attend.
Optional Friday night session. Please ask for more details.

Some shared accommodation is available at £20–£25 pppn B&B, or there are other local B&Bs.

›  Bookings and information: call Jilani on 07966 451534 or e-mail: jilanicordelia@gmail.com.
›  www.dancesofuniversalpeace.org.uk

Bespoke workshops

I offer singing workshops tailor-made to suit your needs:

—  Vocal development exercises to improve power quality range and confidence;
—  Voice work/singing as community development;
—  Harmony singing;
—  Solo singing masterclass, performance technique;
—  Vocal improvisation.

›  Please contact me

Regular Classes & Groups

HummingBirds

New Women's Singing Group in Strathpeffer, Ross-shire


Wednesdays 7pm
Autumn term starts 20 September

Location: various private houses
£6 per session

A variety of inspirational songs from around the world. Gospel, trad folk, pop, contemporary compositions ... if we like it we’ll sing it. No expertize needed, just a joy in singing and a willingness to have a go.

Info  ›  Contact me

Sing for PeaceSing for peace

with Kate O’Connell


Fridays, 10am – 11.30am
Autumn term starts 22 September

Kinloss Church Hall

Please join me in learning and singing some beautiful acappella harmony peace songs from different spiritual and secular traditions.
Let us raise our voices together and create a magical energy in the spirit of peace.

Suits all levels of vocal experience. Learning by ear.
Drop-in price £6–£8 (sliding scale depending on income)

Info  ›  Contact me

Hope to see you there !

Black Isle AcappellaSinging Group on the Black Isle

Community choir for the Black Isle
with Kate O’Connell from Forres


Sundays, 2pm – 4pm
Autumn term starts 17 September

The Gordon Memorial Hall, Rosemarkie
 

Let's have fun and sing some great harmony songs!

Learning by ear. Open to all.
No auditions


New members very welcome. Please tell your friends.
Cost £7 per session. After first session you are encouraged to sign up for the term, payable monthly. A few concessions are available. Please ask.

Kate has been running choirs/vocal groups for over 35 years. Based near Forres, she was, for 11 years, co-leader of The Forres Big Choir, and was artistic director of womens acappella group Too Many Kooks for 9 years. As well as teaching juicy acappella harmony songs, she loves to help people develop their natural voices, explore creative harmonies and experiment with the healing potential of the voice.
Her song repertoire spans pop, gospel, African and other world music, traditional songs from around Britain, contemporary inspirational songs, both sacred and secular.
She also runs a weekly group Singing For Peace.

“Kate has an easy relaxed style which brings out the best in people ...”

To book, please contact Kate: katesvoices@gmail.com / 01343 850266

What is a Community Choir?
A community choir is a singing group that is open to anyone irrespective of supposed musical prowess or training. The emphasis is on fun and the joy of singing together and also on building a sense of community through singing together. There are no auditions and no mystique about the process of singing. Learning is often by ear rather than by printed music. We mostly sing in a circle instead of in chorus formation. This allows everyone to hear and enjoy the harmonies for themselves, rather than songs being rehearsed entirely for the benefit of an audience. (With thanks to Bill Henderson/Forres Big Choir)

As one member has said: “Thanks for welcoming me into the group despite my serious lack of sing abilities. I am learning a great deal and hope I can use this to improve my vocal abilities. I am indeed grateful for all your patience and considerable skills, sharing your knowledge and talents with relaxed good humour.
“I hope those who love to sing locally know how lucky they are to have this opportunity on their doorstep. You are an amazing musical talent and have many skills which include the gift of creating relaxing atmosphere in the class. This makes me feel l can concentrate on the singing and trying to improve my voice to try and contribute to the overall sound of the group. I have been helped enormously by listening to confident signers with beautiful voices.”

Sing for pleasure! And for health and wellbeing!

Inverness singing group now open to everyone with a long-term condition


Mondays  18 September, 2 October, 16 October, 30 October, 13 November, 27 November, 11 December; 2pm – 3pm
Charleston Academy Community Annexe, Inverness
£4.00 per session, per person

 After a successful start in 2016, the singing group for people with Parkinson’s, their friends, families and carers is now open to everyone with a long-term condition. The sessions are led by renowned local voice coach Kate O'Connell, whose enthusiasm and belief that everyone can sing makes these classes a delight for everyone who comes along.

Cathy Orr, Parkinson’s UK Local Development Manager, said: “We are delighted to be continuing this class in Inverness and want as many people as possible to come along. The singing sessions are great fun as well as providing real benefits for people with a long-term condition. There is also a strong social aspect, and lots of people find that singing makes them feel better, which is really helpful for those who have feelings of stress, anxiety or depression.”

The classes are open to everyone affected by a long-term condition. No experience or singing ability necessary, just a willingness to join in and have fun. There is no need to pre-book.

For further information please contact Cathy Orr on 03442 259831 or by email on corr@parkinsons.org.uk, or contact Kate.

Individual voice sessions for children and teenagers

School of Acoustic Rock I really enjoy working with young people, helping them open up their voices. We use the songs that they love, drawn from the worlds of pop, jazz, folk and gospel. I also work with improvisation to help them develop their musical creativity. Over the past twenty years I have helped many young people develop their skills and confidence as performers.

›  Contact me


“ Kate has helped me in pushing myself to my real potential, in fun and creative ways. A colourful and vibrant teacher ! ”   Esther (16)

Individual voice/singing sessions for adults

Sometimes it is just a straight vocal session with warm-ups and voice opening exercises and singing songs. Developing the voice, gaining confidence, learning how to deliver a song.

Other times the session goes into deep healing therapeutic places as, through breathing and relaxation, the student gets in touch with places where vocal expression is held in or blocked.

And sometimes it is a mixture of both.

I work intuitively with each client to draw out their beautiful unique voice..

›  Contact me

Contact Kate

For all events, workshops, groups, choirs, classes and private lessons, please feel free to contact me for further details and to discuss your requirements. Reasonable terms.
I am based in Moray, North East Scotland. I will travel throughout Scotland and further by arrangement.

Phone:  01343 850266
Email: 

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