Rachel Walker is very involved in February’s Renewing the Tradition workshops. As well as leading two of the workshops in Oban and Inverness, she has written our Gaelic song Seinnidh Mi (I Will Sing). We caught up with her to ask her a few questions.
- How would you describe your teaching style in 3 words?
Friendly, encouraging, fun
- Who would you most like to compose for?
I enjoy working with harmony and rhythm, so I’d absolutely love to compose for a choir and orchestra. So many possibilities and a massive sound.
- What would you say to someone who has never sung in Gaelic before?
Don’t be afraid of the language. You use your ears all the time when you sing in a choir, and if you relax and just listen to the sounds you will soon pick it up. I started learning the language through song, and it’s a great way to pick up a few words and discover the joy of Gaelic song.
- What are you most looking forward to at your workshops?
I’m looking forward to meeting new people and bringing the music to life. One of my favourite things is hearing a piece of music come to life, and seeing the joy on people’s faces when it starts to sound good.
- What has been your singing, teaching or composing experience?
I started singing when I was very young and it’s always been a part of my life. I’m very lucky to have had the opportunity to be able to perform in lots of different situations, and to have been commissioned to compose music on different themes. I never expected to be involved with choral music, but when I was approached and asked to conduct Lochaber District Gaelic Choir I couldn’t say no. It’s one of the best decisions I’ve ever made, and has been an amazing experience so far. I’m delighted to get this chance to work with Scotland Sings, and am really looking forward to the workshops.