summer singing school


Course Tutors

Neil Baker

Neil Baker studied at the Royal Northern College of Music, where he was the recipient of all the major song prizes. He continued his studies in London at the Royal College of Music and subsequently with Margreet Honig in Amsterdam. 

Neil began his professional singing career in the Glyndebourne Festival chorus and went on to make his international operatic debut with Marc Minkowski and Les Musiciens du Louvre in the role of Harald in Wagner’s Die Feen at the Châtelet Theatre, Paris. Other performances with Maestro Minkowski include Le nozze di Figaro at the Aix-en-Provence Festival, Baden Baden and Tokyo. His many operatic roles include Aeneas (Dido and Aeneas), Demetrius (A Midsummer Night’s Dream), Araspe (Tolomeo), Melisso (Alcina), Escamillo (Carmen), Marco (Gianni Schicchi) and Count Almaviva (Le nozze di Figaro).

Neil continued his collaboration with Marc Minkowski and Les Musiciens du Louvre, appearing in major venues around Europe including the Salle Pleyel (Paris), Palais des Beaux-Arts (Brussels), the Barbican (London), and Grenoble as a soloist in Purcell’s Hail Bright Cecilia, which culminated in a critically acclaimed performance at the Salzburg Festival. An accomplished concert performer, Neil’s notable appearances include Handel’s Messiah with the Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment, Britten’s Cantata Misericordium at St John’s Smith Square, London, Mozart’s Requiem, which was performed throughout Portugal under the direction of Jaap ter Linden, and recitals at the Concertgebouw in Amsterdam. 

Alongside his performing career, in 2003 Neil began teaching fellow singers who sought his advice. He has since enjoyed a successful career as both a singer and a voice teacher, but his reputation as a voice teacher has grown so rapidly that he now devotes his time primarily to his teaching. Neil has acquired a formidable and important list of students both from the UK and abroad many of whom can be found performing on the world’s greatest stages including the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden, The Metropolitan Opera, La Scala, Chicago Lyric Opera, Seattle Opera, Santa Fe Opera, Glyndebourne Festival Opera, Welsh National Opera, Opera North, Opera Australia, Opera New Zealand. 

Neil is currently a member of the professorial staff at Trinity Laban Conservative of Music and Dance.  Frequently invited to teach internationally, Neil has recently taught in Vienna, Geneva, Bayreuth, Santa Fe and Auckland. 

Michael Harper

Michael Harper is a singer, vocal consultant and singing teacher.   He has sung opera, oratorio, and new music in the US, Europe and in China, premiering new works in the UK, Venice, and Geneva.

As a vocal consultant, he has given master classes, workshops and lectures for the Centre for Performance Research (Aberystwyth), the Asolo Song Festival and Institute for Song Interpretation (Italy), The National Foundation for Youth Music, Sing Up, The Sage Gateshead (Newcastle), Jackdaws Music Education Trust (Somerset), Guildhall School of Music and Drama, The Gulbenkian Foundation (Lisbon), the National Opera Studio (London),  the Royal Northern College of Music (Manchester), various US universities including Westminster Choir College (Princeton) where he worked with the Grammy-nominated Williamson Voices, and the British Library, where he held an Edison Fellowship.

He has curated recitals for the London Song Festival and for Steinway Hall on the songs of African American and Black British Composers, and directed a tribute to the Fisk Jubilee Singers as part of the Hull City of Culture, 2016

He teaches singing at the Royal Northern School of Music in Manchester and has private studios in London, Bristol, and at the den Norske Opera in Oslo. He is trustee of the Saga Trust (Edison Fellowship, British Library) and a Patron for the National Opera Studio’s Diverse Voices programme.

Morag McLaren

After gaining a degree in education from the University of Lancaster, Morag went on to train as an opera singer at the Royal Northern College of Music.  Not wanting to be pigeonholed, she chose to explore the genres of Musical Theatre, Musical Comedy, Physical Theatre, Cabaret, One Woman Shows and Opera Improvisation. She has had the good fortune to perform as a soloist for; Welsh National Opera, Scottish Opera, The National Theatre, and in the West End, as well as enjoying travelling the globe with Opera Circus, Impropera, and a range of One Woman Shows.  She has recorded three solo albums.

Morag’s keen and continued interest in education, creativity and performance psychology steered her as a mature student to take a course in Performance, Health and Personal Development at London College of Music. Her studies allowed her to explore and expand her workshop teaching method.

​The diversity of Morag’s professional career, particularly in physical theatre and improvisation, plus her focus on the creative process and ensemble dynamic has provided a natural transition from workshop leader to director.   The pieces she has directed, she describes as workshop led productions.  To date she has directed Dido and Aeneas for London College of Music and The Turn of the Screw, Hansel &Gretel and Così Fan Tutte in collaboration with young, professional singers and Bath Philharmonia for Frome Festival at Cooper Hall.

Morag works as a vocal coach, consultant and mentor for groups and individual singers. She has led performance workshops and master classes at The Guildhall School of Music and Drama, London College of Music, Trinity Laban Conservatoire of Music and Dance, Ardingly International Music School, Guildford School of Acting, Iford Arts New Generation Artists Programme and The Cooper Hall Emerging Artists Workshop.

Morag is Co-Founder of and core tutor for Vox Integra, a leading provider of specialized career development courses for students and professionals in the vocal arts.

​Morag is Founder and Creative Director of Cooper Hall, a performance space on the outskirts of Frome, Somerset, where a range of events are programmed in; performance and education, including The Cooper Hall Emerging Artists Workshop and Cooper Hall Opera Club.

Brian Parsonsbrian

Brian is a graduate of the Royal College of Music where his teachers were Bernard Roberts and Maria Donska (piano) and Frederick Sharp and Lyndon van der Pump (singing).

As a postgraduate he went on to study for a further two years at the Royal College of Music Opera School with scholarships from the RCM Patrons Fund and the Ralph Vaughan Williams Trust, winning acclaim notably for his performance of the title role in Benjamin Britten’s Albert Herring. He also studied privately and in masterclasses with Eric Vietheer, Eugenie Triguez, Geoffrey Parsons, Gerhardt Husch, Nadia Boulanger, Pierre Bernac, David Pollard and Peter Pears.

He won the Major van Someren Godfrey Prize for English Song and was a Finalist in the Richard Tauber Competition, the Royal Overseas League Competition and the National Federation of Music Societies Award for Male Singers.

Brian has sung in recital, in concerts and in festivals both at home and abroad including the Spitalfields, Norwich, Camden, Cuenca, Maggio Musicale and Athens Festivals with conductors including Jean-Claude Malgoire, Christoph Rousset, David Roblou, William Christie and Frantisek Vajnar. He has broadcast for the BBC and French Radio and Television, and featured as soloist in many recordings including the cantatas of Bernier and Martinu as well as contemporary works by Berio, Henze and Holliger.

Equally at home on the operatic stage, Brian has sung for the Royal Opera House Covent Garden, English National Opera, Glyndebourne, Wexford Festival Opera, Aix en Provence Festival Opera, Opera 80 (now English Touring Opera) and more recently Venetian Opera and Bampton Classical Opera.

He teaches at an international level and has taught on the Berkshire Choral Union (USA), AIMS and Summer Music (UK) and Séminaire Estival de Musique en Wallonie (Belgium) summer schools.

Brian has also given masterclasses for Floral Opera (London) the Cergy Pontoise, Angers and Grenoble Conservatoires (France) and from 1998/2017 was Professeur de Chant at the Conservatoire National Supérieur de Musique et Danse, Lyon, and Professor of Singing at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama London 2000/2015

He is currently a tutor for VoxIntegra and BenslowMusic, a member of the chamber music ensemble Insieme, and director of WorkshopWeekend@Winfrith, short and intense voice courses in Dorset.

Brian is a Fellow of the Incorporated Society of Musicians and also an active member of the Association of English Singers and Speakers.

Course pianists

Grace Carter

Grace Carter began her studies as a Pianist at the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland specialising in Vocal Accompaniment, later studying as a Repetiteur on the Opera Course at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama.

Having spent her initial studies working so frequently with singers, she began her own training as a soprano at Trinity Laban Conservatoire of Music and Dance and subsequently the Dutch National Opera Academy, receiving an International Opera Awards Bursary in 2015. She has performed most recently at the Dutch National Opera, the Oxford Lieder Festival, Mozarthaus- Vienna, Musiekgebouw aan t’Ij – Amsterdam and the Britten Pears Young Artist programme at Snape Matings. Grace was a recording artist with Deutsche Grammophon, Paris for an album of operas arranged for five female voices.

Grace is based in South East London and is now working as a vocal coach combining her experience as both a singer and pianist. She has worked with young artists for British Youth Opera, the Festival Lyrique de Belle-Ile-en-Mer and is a regular accompanist for the International Opera Awards Young Artist masterclasses.

Marc Verter

Marc Verter is a pianist, song accompanist and vocal coach. Marc was the artistic director for over five years at the Chelsea Schubert Festival. Alongside his performing work Marc is a highly sought after vocal coach and repetiteur. Previous opera engagements have included Aix en Provence festival, Opera pa Skeret programme in Sweden, the Dartington festival in the UK and the double bill for Opera Pegasus in 2023. He is currently on staff as a vocal coach at the Guildhall School of Music & Drama, the Mediterranean Opera Studio and Festival in Sicily and accompanist for the Jette Parker Aritsts Programme in the Royal Opera House. He has performed at music festivals in Israel, North America and Europe and has played for such internationally renowned singers as Yvonne Kenny, Jonathan Lemalu, Nelly Miricioiu, Kate Royal, Sarah Walker and Chen Reiss. He curated a salon concert series recreating the glamour of 19th century European musical soirees. Recordings include recital with soprano Ilona Domnich (Quartz), Robert Franz lieder (MPR), Piano pieces by Tamara Konstantin (Naxos) and songs by holocaust survivor and reemerging composer Mieczyslaw Weinberg with bass-baritone Mark Glanville ( Challenge – release expected 2023).
For more information please visit and

Chad Vindin

Born in Australia, Chad studied at the Sydney Conservatorium of Music before moving to London to study with Malcolm Martineau and Michael Dussek at the Royal Academy of Music. From there, Chad was awarded the position of Lord & Lady Lurgan Junior Fellow in Accompaniment at the Royal College of Music, before taking up a position as regular vocal coach at the Royal Academy of Music.

Chad has been awarded many prizes, including the accompanist prize at the Royal Overseas League Competition, the Ludmilla Andrew Russian Song Accompanist Prize at the Royal Academy of Music, and the Maureen Lehane Vocal Awards Accompanist’s Prize at the Wigmore Hall.

Chad performs regularly as a recitalist with the Royal Overseas League, The Tait Memorial Trust, and the popular Debut Opera series, based in Shoreditch. He has worked with Grange Festival Opera, Bergen National Opera, Bury Court Opera, Opera UpClose. He is regular staff pianist at Malcolm Martineau’s annual Oxenfoord International Summer School for Singers and Accompanists in Scotland, and toured with Manchester Collective performing Schoenberg’s Pierrot Lunaire, in a new English translation. He is currently the assistant conductor for The Grange Festival’s production of Gilbert and Sullivan’s Yeoman of The Guard.