This blog is written by Mary-Jess. British soprano, winner of the Chinese ‘X Factor’, official Downton Abbey Songstress and representative of British music in 144 countries as part of the UK Government’s GREAT Britain campaign.
It’s difficult not to be impressed by a young singer who by the age of 15, had already sung with Alfie Boe in front of 2000 people, and has already had a video of her beautiful voice go viral. So this week, I’d like to tell you more about Beth Ford.
As some of you may know already, Beth is one of the young singers I chose to work with on my forthcoming album, the aim of which is to help young singers in their quest to get and then maintain a foothold in the industry. I chose to work with her because I love her voice, she is kind, very professional, and I really think with her talent she could go far.
A frozen first performance together...
I first sang with Beth at the Atherstone date of my ‘Prayer to a Snowflake’ Christmas Tour 2016 to celebrate the release of my winter album ‘Prayer to a Snowflake’. The venue was beautifully decorated all ready for Christmas, the heating was on, the PA was set up and the stage was set. Everything was going according to plan, until the heating failed. Completely FAILED. In the middle of December! But what can you do? As Freddie Mercury so brilliantly put it, The Show Must Go On! We found some blow heaters: very heavy, noisy things with large gas canisters. We put them on as soon as we could but they didn’t touch Jack Frost, who at this point was well and truly on a mission. One canister swiftly ran out of gas and we couldn’t have the other on while we were singing because it was just too loud!
I put out tweets and posts on social media, telling everyone who was coming to wrap up warm. We found some blankets to hand out and the Vicar very kindly let me borrow a big thick black cape to go over the warmest dress that I had, my black, long sleeved, high necked sequin gown.
We soldiered on. We watched our breath rise from our lips as we sang, like futile attempts of fire from frozen dragons, hanging in the air around us like clouds. ‘It’s so cold on these winter nights’ I sang during my song ‘The Sound of Christmas’ and looked at the audience as we all giggled, all huddled together in solidarity against the cold.
A Viral Internet Sensation Overnight...
Through all this, Beth was a joy to work with. She was so professional and sang beautifully. Needless to say I was more than impressed, as were the audience. And no wonder! As I briefly mentioned earlier, in December 2011, at the age of just eleven, Beth was invited to join tenor Alfie Boe on stage at Symphony Hall, Birmingham, to sing ‘The Impossible Dream’ to an audience of over 2000 people. Then in Spring 2015, Beth was recorded singing ‘Pie Jesu’ for her mother in an almost empty church. The video was placed on YouTube and was picked up by the San Francisco Globe who sent it viral and made Beth an internet sensation overnight!
Since then, she has gone on to record a classically-arranged duet of the Ralph McTell standard ‘Streets of London’ with Michael Boe, brother of tenor Alfie Boe and co-founder of North Star Opera. Her debut EP ‘The Voyage’, for which Beth co-wrote the title track, was released as a digital download on 13 July 2016 and flew to the number 1 position on Amazon’s “New Releases” and “Movers and Shakers” charts. Beth was also featured on the “Voices of Classical Crossover” album, released in October 2016 in aid of UK charity “Educate the World” and then a physical CD of ‘The Voyage’, including two additional tracks, was released in November 2016. All this before the age of 17!
If you haven’t heard her beautiful voice before, then not only am I so happy that I can introduce you to her, but I’m thrilled that thanks to our friends at Angry Baby (a music blog which connects great artists to music lovers) we can give you two of Beth’s songs completely FREE! Click here to get yours. You can also subscribe to Beth's YouTube channel, follow her on social media (search for Beth Ford Music on your chosen platform) and Beth's music is available on iTunes or there's a special edition physical CD available here.
A Talented Artist...
As you can see (and hear!) Beth's a wonderfully talented young singer, but she is also a wonderfully talented young artist! Aren't these absolutely incredible?
This year will see Beth and I record together for the first time as I record and release my next album with a vision to help young artists create, maintain and develop their foothold in this difficult industry. If you'd like to find out more about this project and receive exclusive, regular 'AccessPass' updates, check out the campaign here on PledgeMusic.
Thank you for reading! Please do let me know your thoughts by commenting below, and please do get in touch with Beth and get your two free tracks.
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