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Meet SHE: Spicer

Next up is Emily ‘Spicer’ Spicer, top of the tops, who has been in SHE for XXXX.

Tell us about your first rehearsal.

It was back in the days of the yurt and I remember thinking how warm and cosy it was, even though it was pretty much freezing outside.

What’s your power animal?

Hmm – dunno about power, but spirit animal I’d go for a sloth or a turtle. Something chill, but slightly useless, but that you’d happily invite to any social situation.

And your dream boxset/takeaway combo?

GIRLS/Sex and the City and stonebaked pizza with antipasti & red wine.

What gets stuck in your head at work?

Antiques Roadshow theme tune, all the time?! It kind of makes me feel productive but then I slip into a comfortable place of manic insanity.

What would be your choir superpower?

I don’t understand this question?! Mariah Carey dolphin notes?

You hate it when…

You’re forced to run for the bus and you still miss it. I haven’t run for a bus in about 10 years because I refuse to let this kind of heinous situation befall me.

What’s your number one shower hit?

Justin Timberlake – Cry Me a River.

What have you learnt from your SHE sisters?

To jump at new challenges and believe in yourself. That with support, nothing is as scary as you make it to be in your mind. That there are lots of different ways you can be a good, genuine, strong woman.

And what can people learn about from you?

The lyrics to Vanilla Ice: Ice Ice Baby.

The Kardashians (sorry).

Praise a fellow SHEwolf.

There are so many of you lovely ladies to praise! Abby, for being a generally brilliant human being, welcoming, funny and for pulling off mustard yellow better than anyone I’ve ever met. Jos, who carries me more than most people know & who I’ll miss massively. Harriet for being super considerate, thoughtful & inclusive. Elena for her low frequency chill vibe and fabulous dress sense. Urgh, I can’t stop! Everyone is awesome!

Without SHE…

I wouldn’t know so many brilliant women and have a network of people making me feel proud of myself. I’d probably feel as though I had nothing interesting or creative in my life & would be consumed by work. I wouldn’t have an outlet or be inspired to do other great things.

Meet SHE: Kate W

It’s time to meet Kate, a bottom who has been in SHE for 5 years.

Tell us about your first rehearsal.

It was the first London rehearsal at Susie’s house, and I completely loved it but was totally scared that my voice had no range and was too quiet so I just followed Ellie, Hannah and Susie’s lead and muddled through it!

What’s your power animal?

Orang-utans are my favourite, but realistically I am such a mother goose.

Where is your happy place?

Ferrara, Italy on a balmy August early evening, during the busker festival when there is music everywhere. Probably sitting on the city wall, eating pumpkin pasta in sage butter from a plastic bowl and watching bands play.

What’s your favourite SHE number?

Hot Chip – Boy From School, Sophie’s Coldplay one, All Yours.

What will you do when you retire?

Eat at posh restaurants in the middle of the day, wear huge hats, go somewhere warm to live and swim in the sea every day, and SHE Choir, obviously.

What’s your dream boxset/takeaway combo?

I’m obsessed with the 2000s TV show “Monkey Life”, based in Monkey World in Dorset, so I would watch that, accompanied by veggie Indian food – specifically tomato paneer curry, bombay aloo & a good daal.

Praise a fellow SHEwolf.

I love Laura O’B’s energy! She is always keen to get to grips with whatever we are learning and ready to try out something, even if it’s a part formed idea or a nerve-wracking performance scenario. She helps me feel confident that whatever we are doing will work out excellently.

I also love Harriet for how much she has grown during the time I have properly known her in choir; pushing herself and constantly striving to try out something new or learn a new skill. Seriously impressive.

What would be your choir superpower?

Choir mad auntie (Sophie is mum)

What makes you proud of yourself?

How much I have pushed myself over the years and how much that has led to me being a more well-rounded, less afraid, more open person.

Without SHE…

I literally would not be the person I am today. Sophie will kill me but I genuinely want to get a SHE tattoo, it’s so so so important to me.

Meet SHE: Sammy

This week we’re meeting Sammy, a top who joined SHE two and a bit years ago.

Tell us about your first rehearsal.

I was really pleasantly surprised with how welcoming and exciting it was 🙂

What’s your power animal?

I took a very long online quiz to get this answer as I really didn’t know but apparently I’m a Tiger … the tiger puts a special emphasis on raw feelings and emotions. The tiger spirit animal symbolises primal instincts, unpredictability, and ability to trust yourself. You may enjoy dealing with life matters spontaneously, trusting your intuition and acting fast when needed.

What about your dream boxset/takeaway combo?

Parks and Recreation with an Agile Rabbit Pizza 😛

What do you fear and loathe?

THE OCEAN

What’s your number one shower hit?

Half of Frank Ocean’s album Blonde (I take very long showers).

What’s the story behind your name?

I was going to be called Stephanie but on the day of my birth my Mum remembered ‘A complete bitch at school called Steph’ so they went for Samantha 🙂

What have you learnt from your SHE sisters?

That you can do anything you put your mind to.

What’s your most niche interest or hobby?

I follow a lady on Instagram who conducts autopsies – I have a morbid fascination with her content!

What would be your fantasy arrangement?

HAM4BEY: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Vt3tsdUGZmU

This is a mash-up of Beyoncé and Hamilton the Musical.

Without SHE…

I would literally have no hobbies and my love for singing would be quietly repressed and forgotten!

 

Meet SHE: Hellie

This week, we’re meeting Hellie, a middle who joined SHE 3 and a half years ago.

Tell us about your first rehearsal.

I don’t remember it that well, but it was at the Skip Garden and I think we sang College, Real Hero. (We should bring that back.)

What’s your power animal?

I like sloths…they embrace the laziness.

You always cry when…

I watch the Joni Mitchell bit in Love Actually and those YouTube videos where people have been away and their dogs go crazy when they greet them. TOO MUCH.

If you starred in your own TV show, what track would be the theme song?

I love Blood on the Motorway by DJ Shadow but it’s more of an end credits song – pretty epic.

What’s your dream boxset/takeaway combo?

Pizza and Parks and Rec.

What’s your number one shower hit?

The Wicked Soundtrack – I love musicals and think I can sing like Idina Menzel (which obvs, I can.)

What career would you have had in another life?

Maybe a veterinary nurse – I love animals.

Praise a fellow SHEwolf.

Everyone! But I’d say Fran for her infectious energy in rehearsals! 🙂

What’s the most extreme thing you’ve ever done?

Probably a sky dive for charity. Shit scary but such an exhilarating feeling.

Without SHE…

My time in London wouldn’t have been as much fun and I wouldn’t have met so many creative, inspiring women and performed in front of friends and family.

Meet SHE: Rosa

Meet Rosa, a top who first joined SHE Choir Manchester 3 and a half years ago and moved to the London choir around this time last year.

Tell us about your first rehearsal.

LDN or MCR? Well my first ever SHE rehearsal was the week after the Reclaim The Night march in Manchester. I saw the choir perform and immediately thought these were my people. We did a song called something like ‘Seven Shooting Stars in One Night…’ It was very high and I sang very quietly,  but I knew I was onto something great!

Had you been in a choir before?

I sing round campfires a lot which is kinda like a disorganised choir.

What’s your power animal?

When I lived in Mexico I decided my spirit animal was a sea turtle. I was so convinced I wanted to get a tattoo of one, my mum had to convince me that getting a tattoo in Mexico was a bad idea, and since I’ve been living in London I just don’t feel the same way.

And your dream boxset/takeaway combo?

I love Jane the Virgin with whatever junk food I can get my hands on!

What’s your favourite SHE number?

I love Youth, it’s such a beautiful arrangement, but Bieber is such a banger and is so fun to sing!

What’s the story behind your name?

Rosa Luxemburg and Rosa Parks, both incredible women. If I can be a fraction of who they were then I would have succeeded in life!

Praise a fellow SHEwolf.

Emily Spicer has the most incredible voice and always knows all of the words. And Kate Westbrook is incredibly cool, conducts amazingly and I wish I could be a bit more like her.

What’s the most extreme thing you’ve ever done?

Maybe going to live in Bolivia by myself 2 weeks before Christmas aged 18 … or cycling the death road when I got there.

What have you learnt from your SHE sisters?

There are so many incredible women out there waiting to be your friend, people have the coolest jobs ever and if we could make our own society it would be banging (but we would all die as we couldn’t repopulate).

Where is your happy place?

Currently I love swimming at London Fields Lido on a frosty night when the water is steaming.

Without SHE…

I would be lost and have half the amount of female friends that I have now!

 

Meet SHE: Rachel C

This week we’re meeting Rachel C, a middle with 7 years of SHE under her belt.

Tell us about your first rehearsal.

Well seeing as we’re doing this – I am one of only two existing members who was at the first ever rehearsal, in Manchester 2010! The other one is Amy, still in the Manchester choir. We sang the Basement Jaxx medley and I remember feeling a pure unadulterated joy so seldom experienced in adulthood. Alas like heroin, no hit is ever as sweet as the first…

What’s your power animal?

Emperor penguin.

If you starred in your own TV show, what track would be the theme song?

Whitney, I’m Every Woman.

What can people learn about from you?

Harry Potter. Ask me anything.

And what have you learnt from your SHE sisters?

You only see people’s rehearsal personas for 1.5 hours a week – but there’s so much more going on behind that.

What’s your greatest weakness?

Getting involved.

What’s your number one shower hit?

Showering is one of the few activities I undertake in silence.

Where is your happy place?

Rehearsing in the dungeon. Or playing competitive sport, especially rounders.

Without SHE…

My life currently wouldn’t have such a strong women-only space in it.

 

Meet SHE: Harriet

Meet Harriet, a top who has been in SHE, on and off, for about 4 and a half years.

Tell us about your first rehearsal.

I was super nervous. There were only about 8 of us in a yurt in King’s Cross. I don’t think I talked to anyone! But we did Boy from School by Hot Chip which was beautiful and I fell in love.

What’s your power animal?

A puppy. Intense excitement followed by intense fatigue. I’m easily distracted and I love having my hair stroked.

What’s your dream boxset/takeaway combo?

There are too many mouth-watering and exciting options here for me to be specific.

If you weren’t at rehearsal on a Monday night, what would you be doing?

What I do every other night – getting in my onesie and watching Ru Paul’s Drag Race.

You love it when…

I can pay in exact change. It makes me feel so accomplished.

You hate it when…

You’re about to sneeze and then someone puts their finger under your nose or something and it goes away.

Praise a fellow SHEwolf.

So many women! All SHEwolves are amazing and inspiring. I want to thank Kate W for introducing me to choir, and who I have watched overcome personal barriers and insecurities and absolutely blossom into such a fierce and passionate woman. And one somewhat unsung hero is Sammy – she has a really beautiful voice and such a good ear for harmonies. And she’s just generally a lovely and warm person to be around.

What’s your most niche hobby or interest?

Super Mario.

What can people learn about from you?

Generally, psychology and mental health things. Choir-wise, I don’t know? Maybe just how to ‘feel the fear and do it anyway’?

Without SHE…

I would be half of who I am now.

Meet SHE: Isabelle

This week, meet Isabelle, a bottom who has been in SHE for two years.

Tell us about your first rehearsal.

“Crap, I’ve forgotten how to sing…nobody seems to have noticed…just look like you know what you’re doing…and for the love of God, remember some of the names. Wait. Did she just call me Louisa?”. It was awesome, I was in zero doubt about coming back. Definitely one of those moments of taking the plunge and launching yourself into a big unknown thing. Fortunately the thing turned out to be gloriously warm and welcoming.

What was the first album you ever bought?

Black Eyed Peas, Elephunk.

What’s your power animal?

A survey recently told me that my spirit animal is a tiger. In that past I’ve been told wolf, and one friend also once said shark … still unclear what they were getting at.

What’s your number one shower hit?

Dream a Little Dream of Me.

And your dream boxset/takeaway combo?

American Horror Story and Pizza Pilgrims.

What would be your choir superpower?

I dream of having two voices, so I could try out harmonies in the shower, in bed, on the commute, etc.

You always cry when…

It takes a lot. You basically have to either break my heart, or get me chopping a really pungent onion.

What have you learnt from your SHE sisters?

Nothing is as scary as you think it’s going to be. So far…

What will you do when you retire?

Unclear. Probably hate on the youth of today and add gin to drinks which really shouldn’t have gin in them. And if I won the lottery at any point,  I want to have a grand piano with a fairly mellow tone, and a large hall with swooping staircases, and I’ll glide down the stairs to play moody Beethoven late at night.

Without SHE…

It would be just me singing in the shower.

Meet SHE: Abby

It’s time to meet Abby, a top who joined SHE 3 and a half years ago.

Tell us about your first rehearsal.

I had only recently moved to London and was convinced that everyone was aloof and terrifying. My first rehearsal was the first place I had been where absolutely everyone smiled at me when I walked in. And then Ellie started conducting Stevie Wonder and I thought she was an absolute goddess. I was hooked.

Had you been in a choir before SHE?

Never.

What’s your power animal?

Hmmmmmmm. A bear. They are affectionate and fierce in equal measure.

And the dream boxset/takeaway combo?

House of Cards and dim sum. Especially those little char siu buns. Like, 20 of them.

If you weren’t at rehearsal on Monday nights, what would you be doing?

Currently, breastfeeding a very hungry small person. All. The. Time.

What’s your party trick?

I can bend my thumb back on itself. And I’m really good at that game where you pick up an increasingly small cardboard box from the floor with your teeth.

What was the first album you bought?

It was either a Michael Jackson album or the Lion King soundtrack on cassette…

What’s the story behind your name?

My dad named me after an ex-girlfriend of his. Without telling my mum. Thanks Dad.

 

Praise a fellow SHEwolf.

You’re all bloody wonderful in many many ways.

Spicer for her eternal good mood and always making me chuckle. And the fact that she sings like a seasoned black jazz singer and makes my insides go funny.

Elena for her magical musical ability and internal catalogue of absolute tunes.

Marleigh for her dance moves and excellent trousers.

Sophie for being terrifyingly productive at life. I have asked her to be my life coach on several occasions.

Gemma for always making eye contact and having a huge grin when you’re conducting. She makes me feel confident and that what I’m doing is not utterly ridiculous.

Isabelle for the face she makes when she’s conducting -it’s all deep and serene and joyous.

Kate for being my inspiration to get up and do shit that scares me. In SHE and in life. And for her unique brand of geek chic – no one else wears trousers and socks to such wonderful effect.

If you starred in your own TV show, what track would be the theme song?

SHE singing Bills at full pelt.

Without SHE..

My experience of living in London would have been very different. SHE made me feel at home.

 

Meet SHE: Bianca

This week we’re meeting Bianca, a veteran bottom who has been in SHE for 5 years.

Tell us about your first rehearsal.

It was the very first SHE London rehearsal on a Sunday in September 2012 and there were about 8 of us including Susie, Hannah and Ellie who started it, in Susie’s living room in Olympia, and we learnt a song by the Postal Service. I started off in the middle and halfway through the song realised I was definitely a bottom and switched down. I think I mainly mouthed it I was so quiet. I came away feeling really excited and happy to be part of something so much fun.

What’s your power animal?

Not really an animal person but I do love a good monkey.

What’s your most niche hobby?

Surely SHE choir? If not then maybe an obsessive like of computer Solitaire and Quiz Up.

What’s your dream boxset/takeaway combo?

Call the Midwife/Stranger Things and Japanese food.

What’s your fantasy arrangement?

Craig David’s version of Justin Bieber’s Love Yourself mashed up with Cheryl Cole’s Fight For Your Love. Don’t judge me please. Also someone please please arrange this!

People come to you for…

Fairly blunt advice, a humorous take on a sad problem and someone to eat a lot of food with.

What’s the most extreme thing you’ve ever done?

Erm I was once teargassed in Niger?

Praise a fellow SHEwolf.

So many, how to choose? Tashinga’s sass always brightens up my day, Kate W’s arrangements get my juices flowing and I love how much Alice uses her mouth when she sings!

If you starred in your own TV show, what track would be the theme song?

Going Round The Twist.

Without SHE…

I’d have no outlet for creativity and a distinct lack of hobbies.