Young Women In Harmony Educators
NEW SOUTH WALES
Lea is a member of the regional education faculty in Australia and runs her own singing school. She is also the Master Director of Australia’s current champion chorus, Endeavour Harmony Chorus. They’ll represent Australia at the Sweet Adelines International contest in St Louis, USA in October 2018. They were placed 10th in the world at their last international contest performance in Las Vegas in 2015.
Lea grew up in a family where harmony singing was common and joined Sweet Adelines International since 1988 and. Since then she’s achieved her dream of starting her own Chorus and became a Master Director in 2006 when Endeavour Harmony achieved a score in excess of 600 at the Regional contest.
Bec is the lead of 6-time Australian champion quartet, Hi-Jinx and a member of the regional education faculty in Australia. She is also an accomplished vocal teacher with her own school.
Western Australia has had a very successful Young Women in Harmony program for the past 15 as part of the Youth in Barbershop Development Initiative (YIBDI). YIBDI brings together young male and female singers to sing Barbershop at an annual Big Barbershop Day Out (BBDO). They now boast an impressive two hundred students who participate in the BBDO every year.
60 seconds with Lea Baker
We asked Lea a few questions to help you get to know her…..
What inspires you about barbershop?
I love that it’s a unique form of a cappella singing. There is nothing else like it – creating those overtones that give audiences goose bumps! I also love the high standard of vocal and performance education that Sweet Adelines offers.
What has been your favourite moment as a music director?
Seeing the results of the work we put in pay off in performances that are of a high standard. One of my favourite moments was the lengthy standing ovation Endeavour Harmony received at the 2009 Regional Contest in Hobart.
Do you have any advice to girls wanting to sing harmony?
It is really cool so go and do it! Hook up with some friends and just sing together. Singing barbershop is one of the most satisfying and fun forms of harmony singing.
What is your best vocal practice tip?
Listening. Ensemble singing is based on all singers listening and blending. Listen to great singers, emulate their technique. Listen to yourself, record yourself and listen back. How do you sound? What could be better? What is going well?
Where has Sweet Adelines taken you?
From a wannabe “shower” singer to Master Director of the best barbershop chorus in Australia, (currently anyway!). The education and international travel opportunities Sweet Adelines offers is unparalleled in the a cappella world.