the british voice association

About the Association

The Association Council

The current Council comprises:

Dane Chalfin, Ruth Epstein (President 2016/17), Nick Gibbins, Gillyanne Kayes, Craig Lees, Katharine Lewis, Rebecca Moseley-Morgan, Nimesh Patel (President-Elect), John Rubin (Treasurer)

Company Secretary: Kristine Carroll-Porczynski

Dane Chalfin

Professor Dane Chalfin

Dane is a commercial vocal coach and voice rehabilitation specialist. His clients range from charting and developing artists to West End and touring shows. He is Associate Professor of Vocal Coaching and Rehabilitation at Leeds College of Music. He is also Vocal Rehabilitation Specialist (Performing Voice) at University Hospital South Manchester.  His special interest areas include primal sound, high-intensity singing, endoscopic interpretation of laryngopharyngeal gestures in singing, and psychogenic voice disorders. He has presented his research at international conferences and teacher/therapist training events around the UK.  Dane also runs private training courses for singing teachers and SLTs working with singers.  For details see www.danechalfin.com

Ruth Epstein

Ruth Epstein PhD, MRCSLT

Ruth is Head of Speech-Language Therapy Services and Consultant Speech-Language Therapist (ENT) at the Royal National Throat Nose and Ear Hospital, London . She holds various honorary fellowships and senior lecturer positions at UCL and other academic institutions in the United Kingdom , as well as creating and running a successful MSc course in Voice Pathology since 2003 at University College London. Dr Epstein is a past President of the British Voice Association and an elected member of CoMeT, Collegium Medicorum Theatri, the international association of laryngologists, voice scientists and speech pathologists. She is on the Board of the World Voice Consortium. Dr Epstein has published extensively on various aspects of voice and voice therapy; her special interests are professional voice users, occupational dysphonia and neurolaryngology.

Nick Gibbins

Mr Nicholas Gibbins

Nicholas is an ENT Consultant, with a special interest in Voice Disorders. He graduated from Guy’s and St Thomas’ Hospitals in 1998. He completed his specialist training and was appointed Consultant Ear, Nose and Throat Surgeon at University Hospital Lewisham (UHL) in 2012. He runs the multidisciplinary Voice Disorders Unit at UHL and has a specialist interest in the diagnosis and treatment of Voice Disorders and in management of the professional voice. He has published articles and written text-book chapters regarding the management of voice disorders. He is involved in teaching, training and examining both under- and postgraduate medics. He believes that we need to teach our juniors better than we were trained otherwise we will not improve. His passions include the evolution of the larynx and ensuring that professional voice users know how to manage their voice and what to do when it goes wrong.

Gillyanne Kayes

Gillyanne Kayes PhD

Gillyanne is a singing voice specialist, researcher and author. Best known for her book Singing and the Actor, she has particular interest in working with singers of different musical genres. Gillyanne co-authored Successful Singing Auditions (with Jeremy Fisher) and the Singing Express series for children's voices (with Ana Sanderson & Jeremy Fisher). Contributions to the Oxford Handbook of Singing – 'Pedagogy of Different Sung Genres' (co-authored with Jeremy Fisher & Lisa Popeil), and 'Structure and Function of the Singing Voice' are due online in August 2014. In addition to her private practice Gillyanne co-owns and runs the voice education company Vocal Process Ltd., delivering professional development across the world to vocal performers and teachers in workshops and seminars, on DVD and online. Gillyanne has had continuous BVA membership since its Voice Research Society days. She served on the council between 2002-2005 and was involved in the preparation and organisation of PEVoC 6.

Craig Lees

Craig Lees BA(hons), MA(dist)

Craig is a contemporary vocal coach, choir director and arranger. He is a senior lecturer on the Popular Music degree at Leeds College of Music and founded the LCoM Contemporary Pop Choir in 2014. Craig also holds the post of 'Musician in Residence' for the West Yorkshire Playhouse program for young people where he directs the "Living Vocally" choir and facilitates several other community based projects. He has delivered projects for leading voice technology manufacturer TC-Helicon, 'Mind The Gap' theatre company (England's largest learning disability theatre house) and many other independent organisations. In 2016, Craig assisted on a collaborative music project with the internationally-acclaimed artist, Marc Almond. He is a regular contributor to "Voice Council Magazine” and was recently awarded the "Sing For Pleasure" Young Conductor’s Scholarship. He has presented at international conferences and delivered choral workshops throughout the UK.

Katharine Lewis

Katharine Lewis BA, ARCM

Katharine read Music at Durham University before studying singing in London. Her husband’s work took her abroad, first to South Africa and then to Hong Kong. In both places, she was able to enjoy combining a busy performing career with starting a family. On moving back to the UK, the family settled in Canterbury where Katharine re-established her performing and teaching career. Teaching is now a full-time occupation, involving King’s and St Edmund’s Schools in Canterbury, the Canterbury Cathedral Choristers, the Royal College of Music Junior Department and the National Youth Choir. Katharine also teaches scholarship students at the University of Kent and has recently been appointed coach to Eltham College Treble Choir. Katharine has been a keen member of the BVA for many years.

Rebecca Moseley-Morgan

Rebecca Moseley-Morgan MA, Musicology BA (Hons), ARCM (Hons)

Rebecca is a professional singer, teacher, director and conductor. She studied at the RCM and Opera School and worked professionally at Glyndebourne, WNO, Opera 80 and many other companies. She has directed opera productions for Opera Festa, Opera Anywhere and Chipping Norton Opera and as a recitalist performed at Purcell Room and Wigmore Hall, throughout the UK and France. She has a private teaching practice where she sees 50+ singers per week. In addition to this she conducts and trains various choirs in and around Oxford. Having been a keen member of the BVA for many years, Rebecca has begun her own research into the functionality of the mature female voice and vocal vibrato. Her MA dissertation has formed the pilot study for a research project which she is currently undertaking at the IOE, University of London under the supervision of Professor Graham Welch. The study is examining the effect of vocal training on the mature voice and the benefits of singing.

Nimesh Patel

Nimesh Patel MBChB, MSc (Voice), FRCS (ORL-HNS)

Nimesh has been a Consultant ENT Surgeon at University Hospitals Southampton NHS Foundation Trust since 2004. During this time he has led the development of the Voice Clinic and Laryngology service into a comprehensive multi-disciplinary service that serves a large regional population. He is currently Lead ENT Undergraduate tutor, an academic supervisor for higher degrees, Lead Trust Clinician for Head and Neck Cancer, Chairman of the Head and Neck Cancer Network, Lead Clinician for Surgery at Lymington Hospital, Director of two limited companies, chief fundraiser of a charity and a council member of the Royal Society of Medicine Laryngology Section.

John Rubin

John S. Rubin MD, FACS, FRCS

John is a Consultant ENT Surgeon and Lead Clinician for Voice Disorders at the Royal National Throat, Nose and Ear Hospital in London. He is an Honorary Consultant ENT Surgeon at the National Hospital for Neurology & Neurosurgery and Honorary Senior Lecturer at the Ear Institute (UCL). He is a member of a number of professional societies, assistant editor of a couple of peer reviewed journals, serves on numerous committees and professional bodies, lectures quite widely and is involved in research and teaching. He has published extensively in the medical literature, including articles in medical journals, chapters in textbooks, as well as being the editor of several books. He is a founding member of the European Academy of Voice. He has served as President of the BVA and also Treasurer, a post which he currently holds. His interests include poetry, sculpting, looking at art and listening to music.

Brian Saccente-Kennedy

Brian Saccente-Kennedy MSc

Following a successful ten year career in London's West End as a professional actor/singer, Brian Saccente-Kennedy began retraining as a Speech and Language Therapist at UCL in 2009, qualifying in 2011. His MSc research was under Lesley Cavalli and involved the development of supraglottic voice in children post-laryngotracheal reconstruction. In 2014 he began a full-time Band 6 post in Voice at the Royal National Throat Nose and Ear Hospital (RNTNEH). In 2015, Brian was administrator and a key organiser of the 11th International Symposium in Advances in Quantitative Laryngology, Voice and Speech Research and 4th International Occupational Voice Symposium. His current research concerns a potential new device-based form of semi-occluded vocal tract exercise and he presented preliminary pilot study findings at the 45th International Voice Foundation Conference in Philadelphia, USA. Brian joined the London Voice Clinical Excellence Network in 2014 as Social Media Secretary and in December 2015 moved on to serve as Chair, a position he currently holds.

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