Autumn 2018 Conference

Autumn 2018 Conference

Sunday 28 October

10am to 4.30pm, St Paul’s Girls’ School

Taming the tertiary track

Classical, pop or musical theatre – how can we prepare our students for further education applications?

with Nick Sears · Veronica Veysey Campbell · Victoria Stretton · Bryan Husband · Jono McNeil

and representatives from
RAM · RCM · GSMD · LCM · RNCM · RCS · RBC · Leeds College of Music · Trinity Laban · Mountview ·
ACM (Academy of Contemporary Music) · Oxbridge

The day will follow three strands: classical, musical theatre, and pop and jazz. You can opt to follow one strand for the whole day or pick and mix between them.

Presenters will address these topics:

  • How should teachers prepare students for auditions?
  • What is the expected level? Who should apply?
  • What should students do while they wait to audition? Gap years? Language course? Summer courses?
  • What happens at the audition? The dos and don’ts
  • What is it like being a student in 2018? How can we prepare students so they can get the best out of the experience?
  • How do students balance life/work/practice/opportunities/money/debt?
  • How has life changed since we were at college? What are the differences now?
  • What should my students do if they don’t get into a college? What are the other options? Universities, colleges?
Two young singers

Photo: Nicola-Jane Kemp

You will see some advanced singing teaching in action as well as having access to people that you probably don’t usually come into contact with, such as heads of department. You will also get to see a live vocal assessment and hear the outcome! (If you have a student who would like to take part in the vocal assessment part of the morning presentation, please get in touch with Heidi Pegler:

Our presenters are:

  • Focusing on classical: Nick Sears and Veronica Veysey Campbell – Royal College of Music
  • Focusing on musical theatre: Victoria Stretton and Bryan Husband – Trinity Laban Conservatoire of Music and Dance
  • Focusing on contemporary (pop/jazz): Jono McNeil – Academy of Contemporary Music

Find out more about our presenters.

Conservatoire Fair

Representatives from a range of institutions will be present for the whole day so that you can talk to them about applying. These representatives will also make up a Q & A session at the end of the day.

ACM – the Academy of Contemporary Music

  • Jono McNeil – Performance Tutor
  • Elena Stathaki – Marketing/admissions team
  • Simba Mlambo – Events and Outreach Co-ordinator

Associated Studios

  • Leontine Hass – Principal

Guildhall School of Music

  • Armin Zanner – Head of Vocal Studies
  • Samantha Malk – Deputy Head of Vocal Studies

Leeds College of Music

  • Adam Stadius – Programme Leader Musical Theatre

London College of Music/University of West London

  • Ivor Flint – Lead Tutor of Vocal Studies
  • David Henson – Director of London College of Music
  • Emma Evans – Admissions Tutor
  • Ian Duguid – Course Leader, Musical Theatre

Mountview Academy of Theatre Arts

  • Marco Morbidelli Senior Singing Tutor

Oxbridge Choral Scholarships

  • Nicola-Jane Kemp – Singing Tutor at Clare College, Cambridge and Head of Singing at Eton College

Royal Academy of Music

  • Gareth Hancock – Head of Royal Academy Opera
  • Daniel Bowling – Head of Musical Theatre
  • Kate Paterson – Head of Vocal Studies

Royal Birmingham Conservatoire

  • Paul Wingfield – Head of Vocal and Operatic Studies

Royal College of Music

  • Nick Sears – Head of Vocal & Opera
  • Veronica Veysey Campbell – Vocal Studies professor
  • Holly Graham – third-year student

Royal Conservatoire of Scotland

    • Professor Stephen Robertson – Head of Vocal Performance
    • Wilma MacDougall – Lecturer in Vocal Performance

Royal Northern College of Music

  • Deborah Rees – Principal Study Vocal Tutor and
    English Repertoire

Trinity Laban Conservatoire of Music & Dance

  • Victoria Stretton – Head of Musical Theatre and Programme Leader
  • Bryan Husband – Singing Tutor
  • Hannah Dickinson – Recruitment Team


  • Representatives from ABRSM, Faber Music, Trinity College London and Compton Publishing
  • Eva Hornstein with her secondhand music stall
  • Members’ table where you can promote your own events or publications

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.


10am: Arrive for coffee, registration and conservatoire fair.

10.45am: Welcome, introductions, notices.

11am: The classical route – how to apply to a conservatoire – Nick Sears (RCM); presentation on the route including interviews with students and mock auditions

12 noon: The musical theatre route – Trinity Laban – Victoria Stretton and Bryan Husband; presentation on the route including interviews with students and mock auditions

1pm: Lunch and Conservatoire Fair

2.15pm: Choose between

The contemporary (pop/jazz) route – ACM College – Jono McNeil; presentation on the route


A singing lesson in action – choose which one to observe.

  • Classical with Veronica Veysey Campbell (RCM)
  • Musical Theatre with Bryan Husband (Trinity Laban)

3.15pm: A singing lesson in action – choose which one to observe.

  • Classical with Veronica Veysey Campbell (RCM) (different student)
  • Musical Theatre with Bryan Husband (Trinity Laban) (different student)
  • Contemporary with Jono McNeil (ACM College)

4pm: Plenary – question and answer session with all involved plus contributors from the conservatoire fair.

4.30pm: Finish.

Prices (including tea and coffee)

  • AOTOS members: £65
  • Non-members: £85
  • Full-time students over 18: £30
  • School student under 18: £20 (teachers can book and pay for their students, or students can book and name the adult they will come with)

Please note that lunch is NOT included.

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, and send it. Ignore the PayPal page and email the Administrator, Beck Laxton, at, for our bank details and the address to send cheques to.


The Norman Tattersall Bursary Fund offers financial help to members wishing to attend AOTOS national conferences but having difficulty covering the fee. A bursary is the equivalent of one day’s conference fee. To be considered for a bursary, please apply to the Secretary, Jan Spooner Swabey, at least four weeks before the conference, including a short paragraph outlining your reasons for applying. Applications are dealt with in confidence.