Music: The Major Key to Russell’s Life
January 1, 2016
January 1, 2016
Russell Scott has built a successful career as a performer, coach, musical theatre director and impresario on his passion for music.
An early starter, by the time he was eight Russell (OE 1985–1988) had already begun his professional music training and at that age secured an entry in the Guinness Book of Records as the youngest member of the Musicians’ Union.
A year later, he had developed a talent as a cabaret organist and made two LPs, as well as appearing internationally on TV programmes including Thames TV’s charity Telethon.
Between the ages of 13 and 18, he established a reputation as an overall entertainer, gaining two residences and performing five nights a week – all while he was still at QE. Although he did not attend music college, he spent his School years studying music, passing examinations with The Royal Schools of Music and attending the well-known Sylvia Young Theatre School.
After leaving QE, he threw himself into his career and, in 1995, after several years performing cabaret around the UK, Russell joined The London Philharmonic Choir. He performed many of the large-scale choral works, including Verdi’s Requiem, Gershwin’s Porgy & Bess, Beethoven’s Choral Symphony, Vaughan Williams’ Sea Symphony and Berlioz’s The Damnation of Faust and Requiem. In addition, he was Librarian and Marketing Manager for the London Philharmonic Choir and became one of its board directors (1997-1999).
Since turning fully professional as a classical music performer in 1999, Russell has sung with many of the UK’s leading choirs and has sung as an opera soloist, performing repertoire ranging from Tavener and Tippett to Puccini’s La Bohème and Mozart’s The Marriage of Figaro.
He began voice-coaching in 2000, specialising in musical theatre – projects have included working on the BBC’s Celebrate Oliver! special, on Joseph and His Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat and on Les Misérables.
Over the following years, Russell’s career continued to expand. In 2007-2008 he was Artistic Director of Songbirds, where he coached and developed young talent, while in 2008–2009 he co-created and produced The Voice of Tomorrow – a West End project developing and showcasing new talent with support from Channel 4 and The Royal Academy of Music. Russell establish the New Talent Spotlight agency in 2009, dedicated to finding, developing and giving opportunity to emerging professional performers. He has also received regular invitations to act as a judge for competitions around the UK. Russell has produced and directed in the West End and around the country, including shows such as Godspell in Concert.
In 2010, he helped form the Next Stage Choir and was invited to become its Chorus Director. In 2012, Russell and his wife, Denise, took over the choir full-time. Like Russell, she has been performing from an early age and has played many leading theatre roles. However, she combines her musical career with a talent for baking and has built a cake business.
In 2013, Russell became Chorus Director of Waddesdon Manor Choir. He regularly directs masterclasses, and has worked with choirs and ensembles around the UK including the acclaimed Military Wives Choir. He is currently involved in a series of workshops for the Royal Opera House’s Trailblazers project, which seeks to boost creative learning and pupil development in schools.
In addition to his entertainment and production company, Russell Scott Entertainment Limited, and New Talent Spotlight, he also runs A Life in Music, with Russell Scott – a website platform for performers seeking to improve their skills, which features podcasts, a Youtube Channel and a blog. He retains his membership of the Musicians’ Union and also belongs to British Equity and the Association of British Choral Directors.