Aidan Smith - Musical Director
Aidan has taught singing and music to all levels for 20 years. He specialises in Bel Canto and Classical vocal technique. Many of his students have gone on to successful professional careers in singing in a variety of styles.
After training at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama, the Royal Academy of Music and the National Opera Studio, Aidan went on to become an Associate Artist of Welsh National Opera. Since then he has enjoyed a very successful operatic career in the UK and internationally.
Aidan has recently performed with the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden, Glyndebourne Festival Opera, English National Opera, Welsh National Opera and Scottish Opera. Internationally he has performed for Bregenz Festspiel, Saltzberg Festival and L’Ambronay Ancient Opera Festival.
Aidan currently teaches privately and is head of singing for London Studio Centre Associates programme. He has performed workshops for English National Opera and given masterclasses as far afield as the UAE.
Aidan is inspirational, self-motivated and reliable. He is committed to developing musical skills, helping students to become independent and striving musicians.
Watch a video of Aidan performing Bottoms Dream from A Midsummer's Night Dream here.
Luc Bailey - Principal Teacher
Luc has been immersed in the performing arts world since a young age having started out with the National Youth Music Theatre and having studied Musical Theatre and Dance at college. Luc went on to train with the Imperial Society of Teachers of Dancing and completed his qualifications in Modern Theatre and Tap Dance. He was awarded a scholarship to train further with Tap Attack and continued his studies of Rhythm Tap dancing at festivals all around the world.
Luc performs locally with a jazz trio called ‘Hands and Feet’, featuring tap dancing, saxophone and guitar. He most recently appeared as the tap dancer with the JP All Star big band for Duke Ellington’s Sacred Concert.
Luc has a variety of choreographic experience; from the amateur dramatic shows with societies across the county, to various summer school projects and professional productions at the Everyman Theatre.
As a musician, Luc has been grateful to work with many groups, schools, colleges and productions as a Musical Director and Pianist. He has been studying classical and jazz piano since a young age and has achieved his Licentiate Diploma in classical piano performance. He founded and conducted his own Cheltenham based Gospel choir in 2015 and now conducts the Gloucestershire Police Male Voice Choir. He has worked on in-house professional productions at the Everyman Theatre as Musical Director and composed the music for a new production of Jamela Gavin’s ‘Coram Boy’ which was performed at Gloucester Cathedral.
Luc performs regularly at Highgrove House in Tetbury during the summer months and for their special events.
Kate Denton - Principal Music Teacher
Kate graduated from the Royal Academy of Music with a First Class Honours degree. She studied cello, piano and singing. Whist at the Academy, Kate gained a Licentiate of the Royal Academy of Music teaching diploma. The course focussed on all aspects of individual teaching; from safeguarding through to technique. After completion of her degree Kate was awarded the Douglas and Hilda Simmonds scholarship to study at the Royal College of Music in London at Postgraduate level.
Kate has spent many years teaching and performing. Performances include with the London Symphony Orchestra and the Verbier Festival Orchestra. As a chamber musician and soloist, she has performed in the Purcell Room, St. James’s Piccadilly, St. John’s Smith Square, Fulham Palace and the Cheltenham Festival. She worked for Live Music Now, giving performances and workshops in special needs schools, hospitals and prisons. She was also accepted by CAVATINA music to give musical workshops in schools and was a regular performer as part of a duet for Music in Hospitals.
In 2010, Kate started working as an examiner for the London College of Music exam board. This involved examining in the UK as well as tours to Indonesia and the UAE. Kate has spent 10 years living overseas where she worked as an instrumental teacher in many top British International Schools. Having returned to the UK, she is now working for Gloucester Academy of Music and for other schools in Gloucestershire.
Kate has done a vast amount of individual tuition. She regularly prepares students for concerts, auditions and exams, with the majority gaining distinctions. She believes communication with parents is vital to the success of individual music tuition and always gives regular feedback.
Jonathan Lyall - Principal Music Teacher
Jonathan Lyall is a vastly experienced pianist and piano teacher. He teaches all classical styles, as well as jazz, latin, rock and pop. In addtion to a Music degree he holds a post graduate teaching qualification, as well as piano and singing Diplomas.
Jonathan has spent more than 25 years working in music education, holding several Head of Department roles. During this time he has been the principal pianist at the schools that he has worked at, and has accompanied and performed alongside countless student and adult musicians in concerts, rehearsals, exams, competitions and auditions. He is comfortable improvising in various styles, as well as sight-reading.
Jonathan has taught the piano continuously during this time. He has taken students through the traditional and jazz syllabi of the ABRSM, and also the traditional and Rock and Pop syllabi of Trinity College. He also teaches singing students across many styles of music, and conducts adult and student choirs.
Jonathan really enjoys working with students and helping them to find their own path in to music.
Daniel Holley - Music Teacher
Daniel is an experienced performer and teacher. After finishing school, he gained a scholarship to study at the Italia Conti Academy of Theatre Arts.
Since graduating his theatre credits include Tommy DeVito (Big Girls Don’t Cry, UK Tour), Tenor (The Twelve Tenors, European Tour). He was also a semi finalist with The Kingdom Tenors on Britain’s Got Talent in 2016, Frankie Epps (Parade, London Theatre Workshop), Ernst Robel (Spring Awakening, The Broadway Theatre, London), Tobias (Sweeney Todd, Longborough Festival Opera).
Just before lockdown Dan had been appearing in “Starlight Express “in Bochum Germany. During his two year contract he played several roles including Bobo (the French Engine) Dusty and the title role Rusty.
His recording credits include: William (Ivanhoe original cast recording) and Celia (original cast recording).
As well as his performing career, Dan has trained as a teacher and workshop leader through MJ-UK and Longborough Festival Opera. He specialises in training and coaching for professional auditions and entry for drama and musical theatre courses alongside coaching young singers for music theatre and drama exams.
Some of his most successful students include Harry Apps (Marius - Les Miserables Tour and West End 2018-19), Amos Mayland (Zack - School Of Rock West End 2017-2019), Dillon White (scholarship for PPA Course), Henry Firth (Undergraduate of Arts Educational Trust) and Ollie Humphries (Undergraduate Mountview Theatre School ).
Chloé Underwood - Music Teacher
Chloé Underwood was awarded a scholarship to study Opera and Vocal studies at the Royal Birmingham Conservatoire. She has appeared in various operas playing the roles of Mercedes (Carmen), Nancy (Albert Herring) and Hermia (The Enchanted Island). In 2020 she was awarded the ‘Charles Wood Song Prize in Northern Ireland whist also being awarded a place on the British Youth Opera 2020 summer workshops. Chloé was also part of the CBSO chorus from 2018-2020 and performed with various conductors including Mirga Gražinyte-Tyla and Sir Simon Rattle.
Whilst at the conservatoire Chloé taught in multiple environments during her four-year degree. She has worked with the Birmingham Music service and various schools around the west midlands helping underprivileged students get access to singing. She worked on the 2019 Youth Proms welcoming 40 schools to the Symphony Hall in Birmingham for 2 weeks worth of shows. Chloé has also worked with International students on the Malvern College Summer camps.
In her lessons Chloé aims to treat no two voices the same and work on the tutee as an individual. Chloé works on technique and performance confidence and aims to help her pupils compile an array of repertoire, whatever level of singing the pupil may be. She can help students prepare for ABRSM exams, recitals, conservatoire applications, whilst also giving a thorough insight into how to prepare for, and what to expect from auditions.