Ten in a Bar Harmony signing Group Swidnon



Next Concert

See Future Concerts


Next Show 2018

Wed Feb 14 - 17th

7.30 pm.

Arts Centre, Old Town

Swindon

Members

JILL HODGE

After gaining a BA (HONS) degree in Music in 1980, Jill began teaching in a Swindon secondary school, and quickly established a reputation for directing choirs and vocal groups. During this time Jill produced two high quality competition choirs, (The Ridgeway School Choir and the Swindon Songsters) who had many successes in and around the South West, as well as at national level. After teaching music for 18 years, and acting as Head of Music in two comprehensive schools in Swindon, Jill decided to go back to university to study for a post-graduate qualification in Specific Learning Difficulties. Jill now works as a Specialist Learning Support Tutor at New College, teaching students with specific learning differences, and has a particular interest in Autistic Spectrum Disorders. Always a great lover of the theatre and stage, Jill has teamed up with various amateur groups over the years, but now concentrates on Ten in a Bar, which she considers to be her ‘most creative and fulfilling’ venture. Jill’s infamous sketches have become a popular trademark of the group.


KIRSTIE SMITH  - Pianist and Assistant Director

It was no surprise that Kirstie would pursue a musical career having been born into a musical family. She began playing the piano at 3 and was lucky enough to take part in a Masterclass with Sir Peter Donohoe at 15. She gained her BA Hons Degree at The Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama studying under Sir Michael Roll. Whilst there, Kirstie played for most of the College's stage productions and workshops, as well as earning a crust at local theatres, clubs and music venues. Kirstie later became Head of BTEC Performing Arts at New College Swindon before taking on her present role of Graded Music Examiner for Rockschool Ltd. She continues to perform in her party band Pop of Ages, and her solo tribute 'The Annie Lennox Experience' helped to raise over £30k for Cancer Research in Kuala Lumpur, 2013. Kirstie is delighted to be the rehearsal pianist for Ten in a Bar and always looks forward to working with such a talented group.

 


STEVE BRAIN

Born in Swindon, Steve was already treading the boards at the age of five and singing treble in a church choir by eight. He still enjoys the discipline of church choral music and has been a bass in his church choir for more years than he cares to remember! Several years at university in Manchester as well as a period living in France broadened his musical horizons as he sang in a variety of different choirs and choral societies. Even when he’s not rehearsing musically, he’s likely to be found on stage and involved in some dramatic production – even being called on to play the part of panto ‘dame’. He first met up with Jill Hodge a number of years ago when the Wyvern Theatre was organising amazing community productions (having particularly fond memories of ‘My Fair Lady’ and ‘Oh What a Lovely War!’), and he leapt at the opportunity of joining Ten in a Bar as a founding member back in 1992.


ALISON CANNING

Previously a member from 2000-2003, Alison re-joined Ten in a Bar for the 2009 show. She particularly enjoys the eclectic mix of music and the challenges of the sketch. The performing bug first bit Alison back in VI form college and after moving to Swindon Alison joined SALOS. She has enjoyed many shows with them, with Sweeney Todd, playing Mrs Lovett opposite her husband as Sweeney, a real highlight. Alison is a primary teacher, currently in West Berks and has a small private practice teaching singing from home.

TRACY CUTHBERT

Tracy started her stage career at an early age when she joined the Tanwood School of Dance, performing in many shows, festivals and professional pantomimes. She started singing at the age of 22 after joining SALOS in 1992 and has enjoyed many shows with them. Tracy first met Jill when she performed in the Wyvern community projects. She has also been involved with the M4 Theatre Co., Stage Struck and the Strolling Players.

Tracy joined Ten in a Bar in 2001 after watching many of their shows, particularly enjoying the mix of singing and comedy sketches. She has recently taken on a new career as a Teaching Assistant, working part time to be at home with her little girl Megan, who has also appeared as an ‘extra’ in Ten in a Bar’s 2010 show.

PETER KENT

By the age of 9, Peter was singing in the church choir and from 18 performed with SALOS, Stage Struck (founder member) and other local groups. In the 1980’s, Peter auditioned in London and became a founder member of the successful 2 girl/ 2 boy vocal harmony group PANACHE. They soon became one of the top cabaret acts, highlights included performing on BBC1’s Opportunity Knocks and at The Savoy in London. On returning to Swindon, Peter became a baritone with the newly formed Ten in a Bar in 1993. He has loved performing with this group over the years, enjoying both the comedy element and the wonderful harmony sound. A qualified Counsellor, Peter works for Public Health within Swindon Borough Council; he is the manager of Swindon's Health Ambassadors, who support people to gain a healthier lifestyle -  both physically and emotionally.

JANE KINGSTONE

Jane started dancing at the Estelle School of Dance, aged 3, and theatre has played a big part in her life ever since. After joining SALOS in 1973 as a dancer, she then joined the alto section of the chorus, singing under the baton of Jill Hodge. This led to Jane becoming one of the founder members of Ten in a Bar in 1993. Harmony singing is Jane’s great love and she particularly enjoys the variety and challenges of the repertoire of Ten in a Bar. Jane has been a much valued member of the executive team looking after the tickets sales, and Ten in a Bar would like to thank Jane’s family for supporting the group for so many years.

SUE HILLS

Sue has been a teacher in Swindon for over 30 years, meeting Jill for the first time at The Ridgeway School in 1982 (both being mere youngsters at the time). Sue continues to enjoy teaching at Highworth Warneford School as Head of Special Educational Needs. Sue has been a member of the group since 1994 and enjoys both the wide variety of music and movement as well as the camaraderie that the group provides. Sue started her theatre life in school productions and has been involved with Stage Struck, SALOS and Kentwood to name but a few. Sue is proud to say that her finest productions were her 2 daughters Jodie and Tessa.


 

HELEN ASPREY

Having sat in the TIAB audience for many years and been in awe of the high standard, the performance and breadth of music, Helen joined TIAB in 2013, absolutely delighted to work again with Jill and such an amazing group of talented people. Performing for Helen started at an early age under the tuition of the Judith Hockaday School of Dance & Drama, which led to participation in many festivals and shows. Helen joined SALOS as a dancer over 30 years ago, gaining 'Zubie' as a nickname which has stuck to this day. Zubie found a voice (a low one!) and has enjoyed great times and many, many concerts and shows in the chorus with SALOS and M4 Theatre Company. Inspiring others to sing, and knowing how uplifting and rewarding it can be, Helen is a founder member of BigSingThing - 'Swindon's friendliest Community Choir’.


 

MARTIN READ

Born in Swindon, Martin began performing at an early age as a pupil of the Judith Hockaday School of Dance & Drama, appearing in many shows and competing in festivals throughout the country including The All England Finals at the renowned Sadler’s Wells Theatre in London. When not on stage, he studied the piano and clarinet and played the latter in local youth orchestras. In 1998 he became an Associate of the Imperial Society of Teachers of Dancing. Martin joined Ten in Bar in 2004 having admired the group for many years since performing (as a dancer) in their very first show in 1994. He has been a member of SALOS since 1991 and has played several principal roles including Will Parker in ‘Oklahoma!, Peter in ‘Jesus Christ Superstar’, Motel in ‘Fiddler on the Roof’, Jimmy in ‘Thoroughly Modern Millie’ and Freddy Eynsford-Hill in ‘My Fair Lady’. Additionally he has also performed with various other local groups including Swindon Opera and the M4 Theatre Company.

Heather Reynolds

Heather is a dance teacher and course coordinator at the Judith Hockaday School of Dance..

KEVIN O'GRADY

Having sat in the audience for many years, Kevin was delighted to be given the opportunity to work with Jill and the TIAB team.

Kevin has been a member of SALOS for 4 seasons performing shows and concerts with them.  He has also performed with The Phoenix Players in ‘Queen Elizabeth Slept Here’; with WBLOS in Oklahoma and more recently as Isador Straus in Theatre Ink’s production of Titanic in 2014.

PAUL SKIDMORE

Paul started singing in 1989 whilst living in Sydney, Australia. His first performance with the Warringah Music Academy was a Black and White Minstrel show, having learned 68 songs in two weeks. On his return to the UK in 1993, he began formal voice training with Mollie Petrie in Bristol and the following year did the rounds of the Eisteddfods, picking up eight first prizes, four of those in one evening. Possibly the last time he was really on form, he says! In 1995, Paul spent time at the Royal Welsh College of Music, singing in the chamber choir, led by ex- Kings Singer Nigel Perrin. Paul joined Ten in a Bar in 2002 and is delighted to be a part of this excellent band of people.

LIZ MEEK

Liz has had a lifelong love of singing and music, inspired by her dad who was a bass player for 40years.  She has been honoured to sing at weddings of friends and family and was able to be involved briefly with other musical groups before starting her family. Liz has enjoyed being an audience member of previous TIAB shows and was intrigued by the range of genres and arrangements of the music.  Liz was thrilled to be successful in an audition and take part in 'As Seen on TV' as her debut performance. Liz is excited to be a member and looks forward to learning from the range of experience in the group.

 

PHIL COSTIGAN

Phil has provided technical support for Ten in a Bar for many years. He became the group’s Stage Manager in 2003 and manufactures props and scenery for the annual show, often painting scenery throughout the Christmas hols. Amongst his favourite props are a working Broadwood Piano for the Pride & Prejudice sketch and  a mobile R2D2 which he made for the Star Wars sketch: Jill did wonder where her kitchen bin had gone !

Phil has also been responsible for photography for publicity and also created the multi-media presentations for the shows with Jill.

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