Rebekah Abbott – Founder, Artistic Director and Conductor
Conductor and Soprano Rebekah Abbott read music at Cambridge University, where she worked with Tim Brown, John Rutter and Stephen Cleobury. She won the Parker Vocale Prize in 2001 and the Finney Award in 2002 and studied with Elizabeth Schwarzkopf after graduation. Rebekah has played the principal role in productions of Amahl and the Night Visitors and Ellen in Peter Grimes. She has sung in major performances for the Hogarth Singers at St James’ Piccadilly and most recently for the National Trust at Blickling Hall in Norfolk.
Rebekah has conducted everything from youth groups to professional ensembles and regularly works as a vocal coach for choral societies throughout the UK.
She started the Holybourne Singers from scratch six years ago and the choir continues to go from strength to strength, with a Chamber Choir and Youth Choir now thriving too.
Rebekah studies singing with Margaret Humphrey Clarke (GSMD) and conducting with Neil Ferris (Director, BBC Symphony Chorus). She teaches in a variety of settings, including St Swithun’s, Winchester, Churcher’s College, Petersfield and is Vocal Professor to the Royal Marines School of Music in Portsmouth. Rebekah also teaches singers and conductors from her home near Alton.
Johnathon Upfold – Assistant
Conductor and Accompanist
Jonathan Upfold was in born in Redhill, Surrey. He currently teaches year 6 at Brockhurst Junior School, Gosport. Prior to that, he taught at Fairisle Junior School, Southampton, and Brighton Hill Community College, Basingstoke. Alongside teaching, he performs regularly as a tenor soloist and has worked as a full-time singer in the choirs of Winchester cathedral, Chester cathedral, York Minster and the BBC Radio 4 Daily Service. He completed a masters degree in ethnomusicology from the University of York in 2005 and a Diploma in Piano performance with distinction in 2001 (DipABRSM). As a student, he was a member of the National Youth Choir of Great Britain before taking up a choral scholarship at York Minster. He also teaches flute, voice and piano privately and regularly accompanies soloists and choirs for concerts, exams and recitals.