Rachel Abbott

Music - Vocal

I have a place at the RNCM, which I have been working towards for a long time. I am on the way to my dream opera singing career at last!

Goal

I would like to complete a course at the Royal Northern College of Music, which will cost £16,100, due to paying international fees because of the ELQ regulations.This means that because I have a masters qualification I pay the international fees despite being a British Citizen. This will be a great opportunity, giving me intense training in stagecraft, language, movement and singing. 

I have been working as a teacher, and have saved as much money as I can, but need a little more to pay for the course and to pay for music needed during the course. I love working as a teacher, but my ultimate goal is to be an opera singer, hopefully a soloist. I hope to be able to do master-classes and performances as well in order to use my teaching qualification. Eventually I would love to open a new opera company where everyone who loves to sing would be welcome.

Background 

I have reached this point through hard work, lots of rehearsals, singing whenever I can and through family spending a lot of money and paying a lot of attention to my talent. I first discovered my talent during  school, I was selected to sing a solo at a teachers leaving assembly. Since then (and even before) I have sung whenever I can. The church choir master was very supportive and suggested that I have singing lessons.  Coming from a single parent family, it was often difficult to afford things. My grandparents gave me a great deal, often paying for singing lessons and giving me money for music, instruments and university. My Mum gave me all she could, and often went without herself, she has been a fantastic role model. 

My family, and my partner are a great support, always coming to concerts, travelling for competitions and auditions and putting up with the hours of rehearsing at home. During school I was always in choirs and went to local bands, trying to get as much experience as possible. I joined in school productions and helped tutor the younger members of the school choir. During my secondary school years I was given a young achievers award for musical talent, a proud moment. I still sing in local choirs and and do concerts whenever I can. It has been a struggle at times due to lack of funding. I had to work to pay for my masters degree and am constantly saving for this course and others in the future. I love to sing and perform in local venues and further a field, often for very little payment, due to it being for a charity. I have had a lot of help from supportive family, friends, teachers and am very grateful for this and know that they will always continue to support me. 

I just need a little financial help to realise my dream.

Current Position

At the moment I live with my partner in a rented house in a small town. I work as a supply teacher, so do not always have regular work. I save everything that I can towards my course, and take as much work as possible. I am trained as a secondary music teacher but also teach primary. I try to bring music into schools where I can, and often do singing/workshops with the groups I work with. I get quite a few local concerts, and have recently sung Mozart's Requiem, The Creation, Horizons and have sung several solo recitals and concerts in the local area. I have regular singing lessons and have two concerts planned this year already. 

We are going to need to move to be near the RNCM this year, which means that rent and living costs will be higher than where we live currently. I have been saving hard, as has my partner but I still need to find the rest of the money for my course as well as saving enough to live on for the next year. If it wasn't for having to pay the international fees despite being a British citizen, I would almost have enough, but this has made the situation more difficult and means that I need to find more support for funding.

The Future

In the short term, I wish to complete this course at the RNCM and get as much performance experience as possible. This will open a lot of doors for me and allow me to enter more competitions and go for auditions with opera companies. 

After this I would like to complete the advanced diploma which will give me the training I need to have a successful solo career. During this time, I will continue to work when I can. After this I hope to have a successful singing career, and continue to do charity concerts, workshops and smaller performances. I need £16,100 for this course, but have already secured around £8,000, so it would be a great deal of saving for nothing if I cannot find the rest. Without the money for this course, I will never get my dream career, as it seems that despite the study that I have done so far and my talent, without a course at a conservatoire (RNCM) it will just not be possible.Most opera companies and managers and even competitions seem to want a course at one of these institutions before accepting you. 

In the long term future I hope to open a small opera company that will be open to anyone who can sing, and encourage people from all sorts of background to join in.

Achievements

I have won a scholarship of £3,000 from the RNCM to study there. This will help me towards my fees. 
In 2012 came second in the international Eisteddfod in Wales. 
I have a Bishops Chorister award
I entered the Chesterfield Music Festival for around five years and won various classes in each competition entered. 
I have sung at Chatsworth Hall, Derby Assembly rooms, County Hall, in local churches and several cathedrals and in various concert venues in the area. I am often asked back to sing solos for choirs such as Baslow Choir and Chesterfield Philharmonic, and have been given some good reviews and feedback from these choirs and audiences.

Summary

I feel that I have worked hard over the years, and have spent a great deal of time and money to get to where I am. The support of family and friend has made it easier, but it has been hard to fund myself through the study that I have done. It would mean so much to me to be able to study at the RNCM. It will help me a great deal towards my future career and give me the intense training that I need to reach my goals. 

Please help me to raise as much money as possible for my course. It is my dream, and I know that it would make my family proud too. Thank you for your support.