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Miley Strikes A Chord with the National Opera Studio

27 May 2021

MLMiley, who lives at Roman House Residential Service, has always had a keen interest in singing. This March, after spotting an advert online, he applied for the National Opera Studio’s Young Artist Programme – a move that opened up the door to an unexpected opportunity to join a choir and, later, a visit to English National Opera.

The National Opera Studio’s programme welcomes applications from exceptionally talented singers from all around the globe. The one-year programme works with elite singers to prepare them for careers in leading roles working at the highest level.

Despite the incredibly high standard of applications received by the National Opera Studio, Miley’s application struck a chord with David Sulkin OBE, the Director of Artist Development at the charity. The Opera Studio welcomes all applications and treats everyone with respect and dignity.

David personally wrote to Miley with some advice for advancing his career in singing:

“Thank you very much for sending us your audition videos as part of your application to the National Opera Studio. We received three hundred applications for twelve places, so you can see that the competition was very great. I am very sorry to say that we are unable to take your application further at this time but were very interested to know that you have the ambition to progress with your singing. I wonder if you might like to join a local choir? We find that people get better at their singing if they work in a group and that might suit you very well. The other great thing about joining a choir is that you make loads of new friends.”

The Autistic Adult Choir

After speaking to Helena Piper, Registered Manager at Roman House, David took the time to investigate local choirs that might give Miley the opportunity to develop his passion for singing. His search led him to The Autistic Adult Choir, a choir that was set up to develop the musical skills and creativity of adults on the autistic spectrum, regardless of prior musical knowledge and experience. The choir provides a safe space that fosters the talents and skills of autistic adults, with current members saying that it gives them a good opportunity to meet other autistic people, help them become more confident and is a fulfilling experience.

In addition to supporting Miley’s ambition to sing, David has also invited Miley to attend a relaxed English National Opera performance at the London Coliseum, giving him the chance to experience an operatic performance first hand.

Helena Piper, Registered Manager at Roman House, explains:

 “I am very grateful that David has taken the time to track us down and offer Miley this experience, at the same time as being so sympathetic to his needs.
“Anyone who knows Miley will know that he loves to sing and is someone who sets his aspirations high. We’re very proud of Miley for having the confidence to apply. He was very excited when he received David’s email. He showed all the staff and asked for help to follow the links and signed up his interest in the autistic choir straight away. He is also very excited to be able to go to a performance later in the year.”

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