Sarah Whitteron is extremely passionate about using voice to create engaging, meaningful art and nourishing community. She has spent the last 8 years in the music industry and is one of Australia’s most versatile singers.
Singer, composer educator and community choral conductor based in Newcastle NSW, Sarah’s career is focused on music across various styles. Sarah currently teaches at the Newcastle Conservatorium.
In 2012, Sarah graduated with First Class Honours from the Northern Melbourne Institute of TAFE, majoring in classical voice and improvisation under Alison Farr-Handley and Adrian Sherriff. Sarah then studied intensively in Berlin with sought after vocal-coach Professor Stewart Emerson (Cologne Opera and Hanns Eisler Academy of Music Berlin); vocal technique with Professor Eleanor Forbes (Jazz Institute Berlin).
In January 2013 she was 2nd assistant to the Director in the Staatsoper Berlin Opera Studio production of Viktor Ullmann’s ‘Der Kaiser on Atlantis’ and in October 2015 she has performed as a soloist in “Love Life and Opera” for Hunter Opera at the Warners Bay Performing Arts Centre. Sarah is loving exploring more lyric dramatic repertoire as her voice continues to grow. She will perform Holst’s Dream City in February with long time musical collaborator Mark Johnson.
Sarah’s work is community focused. Arranging and performing choral music with community projects in various styles, with a focus on 50’s, 60’s and 70’s pop. This focus comes from Sarah targeting her choirs at retirees and realising that most people have their greatest affinity with popular music from the ages 10-30. This is the music which resonates with her choir members and keeps them inspired. Plus it’s great music!
Sarah started her first choir at 16 with 40 girls from her high school and now directs the Nova Bellas- a community women’s choir based in Merewether, that is 50 women strong. Sarah has a great natural flair for conducting choirs and can creatively inspire the most timid of singers. It is obvious she has a desire to lift groups, be lifted & see the groups lift each other. In November 2014, after participating in a Tony Backhouse choral workshop, Therese Virtue asked Sarah to set up a choir and perform for the Fitzroy Christmas Street Festival in December. Sarah is currently enjoying a collaboration with Fitzroy choir Breathing Space to arrange a body of Irish folk songs.
Sarah has enjoyed performing with some of Australia’s and Germany’s most incredible choral & improvisation performers: Jonathan Welch (The Sydney Childrens Choir & Choir of HardKnocks) Therese Virtue (Boite, Nth Fitzroy Womens Choir), Bagryana Poppov (Bulgarian Women’s workshops) Steven Taberner (Spookie Mens Chorale, Bigmmouth), Frankie Armstrong, Diana Clark and Tony Backhouse. Improvisers include Adrian Sherriff (Australian Art Orchestra, Trombone, and electronic music icon), Graeme Croft (iconic electronic musician), with The Astra Choir she was a soloist in Andrew Byrne’s WHISPERS AND CRIES, broadcast nationally on ABC-FM in 2011 & performed with Erkki Veltheim (Viola).
In 2013, Sarah performed and recorded an album with Max Andrejeski (Germany’s 2013 New Jazz Improviser of the Year) & his project Hutte (Germany’s 2013 New Jazz Best Ensemble Winners) to produce an album HUTTE UND CHOR. This was a collaboration with Germany’s top improvisers and four extremely accomplished vocal improvisers. This record has received positive feedback from the industry and been published on the distinguished Traumton label. Sarah also performed with Andreas Willers (Guitar) Els Vanderveer (Vibes), Klaus Kurvers (Contra Bass), Tristian Hosinger (Cello), Maria Lucchese (Voice) and Matthias Badczong (Contra Bass, New Music Orchestra).
In March 2011, Sarah joined highly acclaimed improviser Adrian Sherriff, to co-form the ensemble “Pyriphlegethon”. Since then she have been solidly building her experience in performing, with their last performance in November 2014 at Melbourne’s MakeItUpClub.
At 16 she won a vocal scholarship to St Vincent’s College in Sydney, finishing in the top 3 for NSW subjects HSC Music and HSC Drama. Sarah then attended the University of Technology Sydney completing the scholarship course; Bachelor of Accounting and there after completed a CPA whilst on Coca Cola’s corporate graduate program. Despite this corporate success, her passion for music could not be sated and she pursued weekly lessons with Opera Australia’s principal artist Anke Hoppner, as well as using lunch breaks to practice at the Sydney Conservatorium of Music. Casting all corporate pursuits aside, in 2008 Sarah moved to Victoria and threw herself into Melbourne’s live music scene. Whilst completing her Bachelor of Music and lecturing Accounting at Swinburne University, she successfully managed and toured nationally with a 7-piece commercial cover band; performed regularly with The Northcote Big Band, The NMIT Laptop Ensemble and her own 4-piece original band: Sprowell.
In April 2012 Sarah completed and funded Sprowell’s first self-titled EP produced by Myles Mumford. Sarah also sort out experience in large productions, this included working for Jude Gunn and Eugene Ball on the Black Arm Band’s 2009 Melbourne International Arts Festival production of Dirtsong at the Victorian State Theatre.
Sarah’s desire to aid her community through art has never diminished. In the last seven years Sarah produced 8 successful operatic concerts in N.S.W.- the final production being at Cerretti Chapel in Manly in February 2012. Sarah contributriuted $5000 to the building of the Cootamundra Arts Centre.
In March of the same year Sarah was employed as Copyist and Music Assistant to Angus Grant, Composer and Conductor of the netball opera Contact! which premiered at the Victorian Arts Centre.
There is no doubt that exciting times lay ahead for this multi-talented and versatile Musician.