How did you first hear about the Rock School Vocal Exams?
I remember looking it up 2 years ago, but I didn't have the confidence to do it. Tash encouraged me to have a go.
How long have you been having voice lessons with Natasha?
Well, now that I think of it, its been 4 years.
Why do you think RS vocal exams are a good idea?
Rock School exams, especially the performance certificate is a brilliant idea, because the examiners give you constructive criticisms rather than "Wow you have an amazing voice!" They are examiners who are so interested in you as a performer that they give you their undivided attention. You dont just get your grades back, but they provide you with an examination report that describes what they observed from your technique and performance.
How did you know what Grade to go for and which songs to choose?
I spoke to Tash about it, cause she was the best person to speak to. When I was told that I could easily excel in grade 7, I almost thought Tash was having a laugh. I guess she knew what she was saying as I gained a distinction! :-) In choosing the songs, I decided to go with songs that I could perform, and not just sing, cause once I am able to get into the character of a song, everything falls into place & at the higher levels they are looking for performance AND vocal skills.
How easy was it to apply for the examination?
Applying for the exam is a straightforward process. You could either apply online or via post but the online application is quicker. They give you a call 2-3 weeks after your application to discuss which date is the most convenient for you.
How long did you study for the Grade before taking the exam?
I started working on my songs for both grade 7 and 8 the same week I received a call from them to confirm my exam date which is usually a month or two before the exam. This time was enough for me to work on the lyrics and think through my performance but the good thing about Rock School is that you can take as long as you need to work on the songs and then just apply for the exam when you're ready.
Do you think the exam fees are reasonable?
Yeah definitely, it is money well spent.
What was the examination like? And what was the examiner(s) like?
When I arrived at the venue, I was provided with a room to warm up in for 30 minutes, this helped to calm my nerves in preparation for the exam. The examiner, just one, was very friendly and professional and it looked like he was enjoying himself. Can I say how encouraged I was to see that, especially since it was an audience of one. This made me enjoy myself even more.
How long did it take for you to get your result and were you happy with the result?
It usually takes about 2-3 weeks to get a response. I was over-excited about my grade 7 result because I knew the amount of effort Tash and I had put into preparing for it. For my grade 8 result, I was even more excited because even Tash would agree that I was anxious and insecure about the songs I chose.
Have you used the Rock School accreditation to gain access to any further opportunity, job or education?
I'm currently on a Vocal Masters Degree Course at The Institute Of Contemporary Music Performance so yeah. I had to audition and provide other evidence of my ability. Rock School gives you the support and qualification you need for a lot of music further education.
Would you recommend the experience of studying for a Rock School exam?
I wholeheartedly recommend Rock School Vocal exams. It can be a challenge learning 5 songs, but a vocal teacher like Tash gives you plenty of support and good coaching - You'll be fine. Who knew fun and examinations could co-exist!
TOLU GAINED A DISTINCTION PASS IN BOTH HER GRADE 7 & GRADE 8 ROCK SCHOOL VOCALS EXAMS.