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Trainer profile: an interview with Laka D

We are very excited to welcome singer, composer, choir arranger and director Laka D to lead a ‘Great Repertoire for Choirs’ course for Sound Connections. Before you get ready to sing an exciting range of arrangements from different musical styles with Laka, we thought you might want to find out more about her work and Laka herself…

 

What are your main musical interests and what aspects of music are you passionate about

My own interests are with original music, whether a new take on an existing tune or something totally new. I enjoy performing very much, but working with a group of singers to develop a piece is exciting. I like many sorts of music, as long as it is from the heart. I prefer it to be as live as possible, with an element of danger thrown in!

Which organisations and artists have you worked with, collaborated with, or been most inspired by? 

I have been a musician playing in bands; I worked for a long time writing and playing in theatre. I have taught music in more formal situations – currently I am at Millennium Performing Arts teaching on the Musical Theatre course.

I have run choirs for over 25 years, led many workshops with Southbank Centre, ENO, Spitalfields Music, and the Royal Academy of Music. I have worked, arranging and conducting, with schools singing festivals in Hackney and Lambeth, and also many corporate singing events as a solo artist. I have a different favourite artist every day; currently I am still amazed by the genius of Joni Mitchell, and wish her a speedy recovery, but tomorrow it could be Brad Mehldau again.

What has been your most memorable workshop-leading experience?

One memorable one was working with 60 prison officers, getting them to sing ‘The Boy From New York City’ in three-part harmony.

Where are we most likely to find you?

My website, where you will find links to my recordings and things I’m doing.

What can attendees expect to take away from the ‘Great Repertoire for Choirs’ course?

Apart from ideas for songs and help with improving practical musicianship, I hope people will take away the idea that with the right encouragement, anyone – even the shyest person – can be a real part of something which is fun and creative, and can add their voice to something which is new every time.

 

Book your place onto Laka’s ‘Great Repertoire for Choirs’ here >

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