I began to teach Jodie to talk through singing. We would sit in front of the mirror and she would copy my mouth positions. Jodie's speech was so advanced for her age and her specialist therapists could not believe her progress and ability, which has all been put down to the time we spent singing together.
We knew that Jodie would need a heart operation, and her operation was due in March 2005. At the time, the John Radcliffe Hospital in Oxford, where Jodie was to have her operation, were raising money for the Oxford Children's Hospital campaign.
I decided, with the support of my parents, to create an album of my singing to sell and raise funds and awareness for the campaign. The album, Little Ray of Light, was released in 2004, when I was 9 years old.
The solo classical charity album raised £27,000 for the Oxford Children's Hospital, selling all 5,000 copies in 5 weeks and became well known in the Oxfordshire area.
I loved being able to combine my passion for singing and performing with raising much needed funds and awareness for a charity that meant a lot to my family and sister.
Aged 10, I decided to record a second album. This album was to raise funds for the Downs Syndrome Association, and was scheduled to be recorded in April 2005, a month after Jodie's operation. Jodie's procedure went ahead, and nothing could have prepared my family for hearing that Jodie had not survived the operation.
Eventually, we decided to carry on with the recording of the second album as a tribute to Jodie, calling it Songs For My Sister and including all of her favourite songs, with a special hidden track of Jodie and I singing together to finish the album.
The album was sold nationwide, it reached No. 2 in the UK Classical charts, and raised over £100,000 for the Downs Syndrome Association.
I recorded my third album aged 12, Once Upon a Time, before focusing on my studies and pursuing my musical interests at university.
I studied Music at King's College London in 2013, where I trained operatically at the Royal Academy of Music alongside my degree.
I performed as part of King's all-female acappella group, The Rolling Tones, during my time at university, and continued to sing and perform as a soloist alongside my vocal and academic training.
Since completing my Masters in 2017, I have frequently performed and sang as a soloist around various UK locations in classical genres, and more casually in Jazz, Folk and Easy Listening in smaller venues. In October 2017, I won a competition to sing with Celtic Woman as part of their 'Voices of Angels' tour, singing 'The Prayer' as a solo at The London Palladium.
I am now pursuing a career as a soprano specialising in Classical/Classical-Crossover, whilst enjoying performing Musical Theatre, Folk, Jazz, Pop and Easy Listening and writing my own music.
I also teach singing lessons and acting lessons and love the sense of achievement of seeing my students achieve their musical and performative goals.
At the heart of all that I do is my passion for singing with a purpose to educate and raise awareness, stemming from my incredibly close bond with my sister, which will always be the reason I perform.
The Lejeune Clinic
I am honoured to have been asked to have been a patron for The Lejeune Clinic.
The Lejeune Clinc run small group sessions, which combine practical therapy with observations, advice and discussions for parents with babies who have Down’s Syndrome.
I am delighted to be a patron of this charity who provide much needed help and support for families across England and Wales.
Find out more information on what a fantastic service they provide to new parents with babies with Down’s Syndrome.
Access Scheme Implementation
During my time as a Creative Learning Delivery Partner at Aylesbury Waterside Theatre, a part of the Ambassadors Theatre Group, I implemented the Sunflower Lanyard Scheme to be rolled out across ATG venues to make the theatre experience more accessible for everyone.
The lanyard acts as a signal to staff that the customer has a hidden disability, making them aware of any additional assistance that they may require during their visit in a non-intrusive manner.
I have released several charity singles to raise funds and awareness for both local and nationwide charities.