It seems like so long ago now that I sang at the Festivals (probably because it is!) and I too have fond memories of very happy times. I must say that participating in your Music Festival was to play a key part in my musical journey. It provided some of my earliest ‘public performance’ opportunities, gave me an introduction to serious music-making, enabled me to develop as a musician, build confidence, hone skills and much, much, more besides.
For all this I have cause to be ever grateful. I’ve always been, and still am, a keen advocate of Music Festivals, providing, as they do, a platform and ‘safe’ environment for musicians of ALL ages and ALL abilities, whether just making music for their own enjoyment or as a stepping stone to a future professional career.
There must be so many like myself who owe you and your colleagues a huge debt of thanks and that the Festival continues to thrive and prosper is an amazing tribute to the efforts of volunteers such as yourself and the Wantage team. Please take this feedback as a testimonial to the incalculable value of what you do.
As for what became of me, well, on the back of my outings at WMF and others, I ended up taking formal tuition and eventually going to Birmingham Conservatoire for three years, studying on the Advanced Vocal Performance course.
A life changing experience for sure, and I’m now out in the big wide world as a freelance professional singer performing with my own Early Music trio called Musical Banquet and having such fun! We are just about to do our 100th concert which was beyond my wildest dreams when you and I last met!
I also sing with a number of choirs and chamber groups, have a duet partnership called Take2! with a soprano, and sing with a Lutenist as ‘Ayre Tyme’. So, I’m keeping pretty busy and my only regret is that I didn’t start my own musical journey so much earlier 🙁