Autumn 2016 Conference

Autumn 2016 Conference

Event Details

Phrenology head with emotions markedKeeping an open mind


David Henson – Teaching music theatre singers

Janet Shell – Empowering the Peri: structuring a lesson

Veronica Veysey Campbell – Teaching aspiring classical singers

Nicholas Gibbins – Vocal health

Christopher Goldsack – Keeping an open mind


Our panel of experts will share a wide range of practical knowledge and information relevant to our own individual teaching practices, on the theme of ‘Keeping an open mind’. The programme for the day will provide something useful for everyone – our speakers represent the spectrum of teaching, looking at contemporary methods across all styles and the way singing is taught from the studio to higher education.

A young singer will often come to a first singing lesson with set ideas about what they want to achieve – but these may be at odds with what the teacher expects or feels able to deliver. Christopher Goldsack’s presentation will look at the responsibilities of the teacher, and explore a pathway through adolescence to a secure and versatile technique with the ability to embrace both contemporary and traditional styles, yet with enough flexibility to enable later specialisation with no compromise for an eventual professional outcome.

As visiting teachers, our teaching can be informed by the practices that classroom teachers need to observe. In raising the benchmark on efficacy in teaching, Janet Shell demonstrates how we can structure lessons to gain the best outcomes. She also touches on how doctrine in education can affect the life of a visiting teacher and how our professional approach and personal accountability can lead the way for greater unity with other colleagues.


10.30am to 11am – Registration and coffee

11am to 11:40am – Keeping an open mind (Christopher Goldsack)

11:40am to 12:20pm – Teaching music theatre singers (David Henson)

12:20pm to 1pm – Structuring a lesson (Janet Shell)

1pm to 2.30pm – Lunch

2.30pm to 3.30pm – Teaching aspiring classical singers (Veronica Veysey Campbell)

3.30pm to 4.30pm – Vocal health (Nicholas Gibbins)

Find out more about our speakers. 

Getting there

  • The school is ten minutes’ walk from Hammersmith tube station (Piccadilly, District & Circle, and Metropolitan lines).
  • On-street parking is free on Sundays in Brook Green.
  • Step-free and wheelchair access is available.

Prices (including lunch and coffee)

  • AOTOS members: £60
  • Non-members: £80
  • Full-time students: £25

The deadline for bookings was Monday 17 October

If you’re a member, you should have had at least two email reminders. We had hoped to offer late bookings, but this wasn’t possible.

How to pay

  • To pay by debit card, credit card or Paypal, click below to fill in the form; you’ll then be taken to the Paypal site to complete payment (you don’t need a Paypal account).
  • To pay by cheque or bank transfer, click below to fill in the form, then email the Administrator, Beck Laxton, at, for our bank details and the address to send cheques to.


The Norman Tattersall Bursary Fund exists for the purpose of offering financial help to members wishing to attend AOTOS national conferences and will be the equivalent of one day’s conference fee. To be considered for a bursary, please apply in writing by post or email to the General Secretary, Margaret Hopes, at least four weeks before the conference, including a short paragraph outlining your reasons for applying. Applications are dealt with in confidence.