Meet The Choir – Ruth Strangeway – Choir Mistress

Ruth has always loved singing and acting and in her early school years excelled in several productions at Ripon Grammar School.

Whilst training to be a teacher at Bedford College of Physical Education, where her second subject was Music, Ruth began to have her voice professionally trained. In 1974, before graduating with a Certificate of Education from the Cambridge Institute, Ruth successfully won the Novice Class at the Bedford Music Festival singing the ‘Skye Boat Song.’

Ruth Strangeway - Choir Mistress

Between 1971 and 1979, whilst a member of the Harrogate Gilbert & Sullivan Society Ruth played sub-principal roles in ‘Pirates of Penzance’ and ‘Princess Ida’.

Between 1981 and 1999 Ruth was employed by Yorkshire Water. Throughout this time she continued to act, sing and have her voice trained. She also started to give singing lessons.

In 1985 she became a member of Harrogate’s Deanery Players. With them, over the next ten years, her talents brought her lead roles in many productions, including Dick in ‘Dick Whittington’, Anita in ‘West Side Story’, Eliza in ‘My Fair Lady’, Dolly in ‘Hello Dolly’ and Milly in “Seven Brides for Seven Brothers.”

Also, as a member of Kamamica, Ruth played Svetlana in ‘Chess’ and Sheila in ‘A Chorus Line’.

In 1995 she took part in the BBC Songs of Praise Pilgrimage tour of Israel and, in the same year, gave her first solo Christmas Carol Service engagement, in Harrogate, after which she began accepting professional engagements. In the 90’s and during the 21st century Ruth has performed professionally at Weddings, Funerals, numerous UK and Overseas Concerts, and Residential and Nursing Homes engagements.

In 1998, following requests for tapes and CD’s, she worked with guitarist and close friend Richard Sykes to produce a cassette, ‘Love – The First Virtue’, with their profits donated to charities. They followed this with two CD’s ‘Songs of Patience, Hope and Gentleness’ (2000) and ‘I Dream of the Rain’ (2001).

After these, Ruth released her first solo CD, ‘Droplets’, which was shortly followed by her second CD ‘Heavenly Droplets.’ The proceeds of both were donated to the charity WaterAid.

In 1999 Ruth became employed by WaterAid, initially as their Regional Fundraising Manager for the North of England and then latterly as their Team Leader – Water Industry Partnerships – North & Midlands. She ceased employment with them in November 2011.

In 2003 Ruth studied with the London College of Music and Media to obtain a Diploma (ALCM) in Music Theatre (Honours).

Since 1997, Ruth’s interest in the health benefits derived through singing, music and movement, particularly amongst elderly audiences has grown. In 2011, she established her own Motivational Music business, working with Nursing and Residential Homes in the region to encourage their residents to sing and move. Currently she works two days a week at St. John’s Care Home, Kirk Hammerton as one of their three Activity Coordinators, where her main focus continues to be her passion to get people singing.

About ruthstrangeway

I am a semi professional singer based in Yorkshire. Using my skills from performing in musical theatre, since 1996, I've sung at weddings, funerals, special occasions and provided entertainment to the care industry. In 2011, I created my business "Motivational Music" with a specific objective of encouraging the elderly to get involved, make music, sing, move and have lots of fun. My latest business "Singing for the Soul" is an individual, bespoke service, providing live singing for funerals, memorial ceremonies and at the scattering and internment of ashes ceremonies.
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