Testimonials and Endorsements

 

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“Cindy was able to help me, at such short notice, to prepare for an audition which I was terrified about. However, she worked her magic and within two weeks, having never sung before, I was confident enough to sing for a room full of people! I truly couldn’t have done it without her!” D.R. VI Form Hayesfield School Bath

” Cindy is an exceptional singing teacher. she helped me not only find my voice but to understand how sound is produced. she has a creative approach and lessons are always productive and interesting. Cindy has given me the confidence I lacked to get the best from my voice. she is passionate about her music and this comes over in her teaching. Cindy taught me many techniques to help with breath control and voice placement. She just has a lovely way with her and lessons became the highlight of my week. I cannot thank her enough.”P.H.Bath

“My daughter Olivia was taught by Cindy for 18 months.

During this time she gained enough confidence and expertise to be able to take her ABRSM Grade 5 singing exam and pass with distinction. Cindy was extremely professional in her teaching.

She taught Olivia many techniques to help with her breath control and gave her a lot of confidence with performing.

More to the point as a result of Cindy’s charismatic and lively approach to the lessons, Olivia loved to go. It was very much a fun part to her week and an opportunity to let off some steam from studying.

Cindy is a teacher who brings out the very best in her students. She is so patient and encouraging and has a really kind manner to make adults and children alike feel relaxed when they are performing in front of her.”

L.H. Bath

“I went to Cindy for singing lesson after joining a choir and finding my voice again after years of silence. I was very “rusty” and singing solo felt very daunting but I wanted to try. I wanted to sing for my own pleasure but also had a desire to have some songs I could sing to friends at parties that were my “Star Turn”

Cindy is very encouraging.

She can call on a wide and varied repertoire of music and has a real talent for suggesting songs to learn that match ones’ ability to sing them; while also providing a challenge. This has resulted in my feeling great when I sing a song I never imagined I would ever be able to sing solo, like Leonard Cohen’s “Dance me the End of Love”

She is patient and recognizes that sometimes it is two steps forward and one step back; you have off days! You need to practice between lessons. That Cindy can accompany you on the guitar or piano is an added bonus. She plays attention to your physical presentation and emotional response to songs and gets you to develop your individual voice. Lessons are an enriching experience.

E.A. Bath

“Cindy has taught my daughter through Grades 1 to 5, and has always been highly supportive, completely engaged and immensely professional in her approach. My daughter is very fond of Cindy, and has particularly appreciated Cindy’s approachableness and encouragement when performing in front of groups, which has given her the confidence to progress. Cindy is also highly supportive throughout the exam process, and has taken a proactive and whole approach to my daughter’s musical development.”

A.M. Bristol

“My daughter needed extra help with the singing part of her performing arts BTEC GCSE. Cindy was amazing!  She calmly & deftly helped Ella regain her confidence, by gently tutoring her through all the aspects of her piece; tone, expression, diction & stagecraft. Ella went to Cindy with a predicted C or low B, but achieved an A star!!!” She really knows her stuff!….”

S.P.Bath

 “Cindy helped me achieve an A * grade for my BTEC in performing arts GCSE & for that I am extremely grateful!…”

E.C. St Gregorys’ School. Bath

“Thank you Cindy for my fab introduction to singing. I joined a choir and I did not mime!” J. Bath

“Many thanks for helping our daughter to achieve her goal of gaining a place at Italia Conti…You are a star!”

P and R. G. BristoL

“I just want to say a big thank you for all your help and advice with my singing. You’ve been a great teacher! Love Laura,” Bristol.

 

When I started going to Cindy it had been years since I’d had any formal singing lessons, so I was apprehensive & not particularly confident at first. Cindy immediately put me at ease & helped build my confidence again. I wanted to approach singing as something fun & relaxing to do & she was great at adapting to my needs.

My lessons have always been relaxed & fun, but also informative & challenging. Cindy has an excellent way of explaining technique through visualisation & I always came away feeling I’d learned something & had new things to work on.

She is great at bringing you out of your comfort zone by encouraging you to try out songs you wouldn’t normally try, that she knows will suit your voice, but she will also help you get the most out of the styles & songs you favour.

As well as all of this, Cindy is also v flexible & accommodating. For my first few lessons I had a very young baby in tow!

I thoroughly enjoyed my lessons and I am hoping to get back to her ASAP.

Leanne, Bath

New Release ‘Hummingbird’ Nov 2014

Gorgeous, artful and an artistic step few achieve

‘…..with it’s piercing intimacy of Cindy’s voice against its spare backdrop, elevates Hummingbird to rare and exceptional heights. A truly transcendent album….’ Charley Dunlap ‘
….. At times I am reminded a little bit of Fairport Convention, at other times a little bit of Stevie Nicks, though mostly it sounds like what it is: unique…..’ Joel Pfister (a U.S.A. review) ‘
……The new songs are very strong, evocative and haunting…..’ Robert Andrews

Album Review

Hummingbird
“Cindy Stratton has been quietly singing, writing songs, making albums for several years in Bath while raising a family, working, teaching. The second part is called ‘life’; the first part is usually called ‘career’ if you don’t have a life. Her new cd, Hummingbird, is the next step in Cindy’s ‘career’ and it is gorgeous, it is artful, and is an artistic step few achieve.
Cindy Stratton has a transcendently beautiful voice — I think it’s gotten more so with time — which ranges from alto to soprano with ease and retains its humanity in higher ranges, often not the case with such highly trained singers.
The album begins auspiciously with a chorus loop fading in to Cup of Good Will, which has the sound of English folk, ominously dark lyrics, and impassioned singing from Cindy.
The sound of English folk runs through parts of the album but certainly does not define it. The next song, Hummingbird, has those folk roots but moves into more modern songwriting and become something of a singing, not tour de force — tour d’elegance is more accurate.
By the time you get to the third song, Love Is The Remedy, folk has receded completely.
It has a very slight Crosby-Stills-Nash feel and, like most of the songs, a very minimal instrumental accompaniment; mostly it is a call-and-response between Cindy and the chorus and it works beautifully.
Cherish The Love goes deep into ambient, atmospheric territory. It has a simple guitar line that repeats like a loop, an insistent chorus of “cherish the love” and Cindy in dark, intimate whisper mouthing the lyrics with the word “hunger” recurring. It reminds me of the original Sally Go Round the Roses by the Jaynetts, it is the shortest song on the album, and I love it.
Wash My Sins Away and Strange Places take elements of the previous two songs and use them in more complex and melodic song forms, particularly Strange Places. Once again, there is very minimal loop-style accompaniment and echoey chorus framing Cindy’s spectacular voice and singing. Both, like the others, have very slow tempos and a remarkable vocal intimacy. These last two songs seem very close to home. Strange Places contains elements of wistful regret and acceptance that bring a tear to the eye of this old man.
The album ends with Burning Babe, a 16th c. poem by Robert Southwell set to music by Chris Wood. It returns us fully to English folk and it is like waking from a spellbound dream the previous four songs held us in.
The album is brief, seven songs averaging just over 3 minutes each, but it feels complete, bigger than it is. The heart of Hummingbird is, for me, those four songs in the centre. The first two songs are excellent and the last, Burning Babe, is far better than Sting’s version but that heart, with its piercing intimacy of Cindy’s voice against its spare backdrop, elevates Hummingbird to rare and exceptional heights. A truly transcendent album.”
Charley Dunlap

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