Examiner Profile: Glenese Blake

Genese Blake MA(AT) F.Dip.SCSM After winning the inaugural Dame Sister Mary Leo Scholarship and a number of prestigious awards, Glenese was awarded an Arts Council Grant for further study overseas where she enjoyed a successful singing career in England specialising in Handel, Mozart, Britten and lighter Wagner roles.  Glenese developed an interest in vocal pedagogy which led to teaching positions at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama and the Marylebone Voice and Therapy Unit, and she was a founding member of the British Voice Association.    Returning to New Zealand, Glenese was appointed Senior Lecturer in Voice at the University of Auckland where she developed an innovative and successful voice department.  Moving to Cambridge for a lifestyle change in 2007, Glenese and her husband Michael founded a new creative initiative called The Music Shed, which actively mentors young singers and voice teachers, choir conductors and Heads of Music who want to understand vocal complexity. One of Glenese's passions in how the voice works, the science of the voice; she regularly attends national and international conferences and workshops to keep her knowledge as current as possible. In 2010, Glenese was awarded her Master of Arts (Art Therapy) degree which enabled her to focus on her belief that music has the ability to heal and that voice is an integral part of the healing process.  In 2014, Glenese was awarded the St. Cecilia Fellowship Diploma in Teaching, one of only ten Fellowships world-wide. Glenese is one of New Zealand's most respected voice tutors and is a currently a Voice Fellow at the Conservatorium of Music, University of Waikato, and working in two High Schools where she prepares students for examinations and auditions. She has also adjudicated some of the most prestigious singing competitions in New Zealand, including the Nelson Aria Competition, the New Zealand Aria, New Zealand Aria, Wellington Singing Competitions, and various others.  She has sung many original compositions for New Zealand Composers including Gillian Whitehead, Eve de Castro-Robinson, John Rimmer and John Elmsly, and continues to sing oratorio and concert works.  Glenese's performance of "Out of this Nettle, Danger" by Whitehead was chosen as a highlight by the NZ Herald Reviewers. Glenese is Director of the Saturday morning Accelerando University Group which is an exciting initiative for talented and motivated students from the greater Waikato area.  Glenese also facilitates a number of workshops around New Zealand, for choirs, choir directors, Heads of Music departments, High School and University students, as well as NEWZATS.