|Meet the Stage School Team|
|Debra Kirkness (Founder/Director)|
Debbie is the matriarch of Music 4 U. With a lifelong passion for music, Debbie set up the charity in 2005 with a desire to ensure that young people were given opportunities in the performing arts, regardless of their ability or background. Having sung from an early age, a chance meeting during the talent star trail at Butlins in 1978 resulted in a lifelong friendship with the (now) director of Timeless Theatre Productions. Debbie is the company's Artistic Director and Operations Manager. Her favourite things in life are - alongside family and friends - music(of course), theatre, reading and family dog Patch.
Debbie's words of wisdom: Heart-felt THEN head-lead....
| Liam Bowie BSc (Hons) (Enabler Tutor)|
Liam is a guitarist studying music at college and continuing on to study a BMus in Music Education at University of Aberdeen after the Summer. He loves teaching music and getting people involved with performances and music activities. Initially brought on as a one-to-one guitar tutor, Liam's role within Music 4 U has grown to include being an enabler tutor and leading drama workshops. Liam is involved with a lot of amateur drama companies around the North East and enjoys sharing the fun warmups and games he learns at rehearsals with the guys at M4U.
Liam's words of wisdom: it's never too late to learn something new.
|Lucy Kirkness (Bank Tutor)|
Lucy started off her career with Music 4 U when she was only seven years old, having attended the original classes before matriculating onto being a ‘Timeless Junior’. She now assists the school as a bank tutor, dropping in and out to share skills learned from performing professionally in the industry. Previously she has worked as an Entertainer in Cornwall for John Fowler holidays and is now on a contract with P&O Cruises.
Lucy’s words of wisdom: How do farmers know how to seperate the cows into green, blue and red milk??
|Brian Maitland BA (HONS) HNDip (Bank Tutor)|
Brian is a of jack of all trades for the school, assisting with administration and filming work. He also leads the confiDANCE classes on a Saturday which he absolutely loves, teaching the students new and exciting routines! Brian trained at the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland in Performance Skills such as Musical Theatre and Acting, so he is able to teach us a little bit! As well as years of experience in the industry, he has attained a Grade 8 in Musical Theatre and will be starting an MA in Musical Theatre at RCS in September. When not helping us, he is either studying his English degree with OU or performing and auditioning across the country.
Brian’s words of wisdom: If it’s wrong, make it strong.
|Lisa Mitchell (Assistant Artistic Director/Enabler Tutor)|
Lisa is an enabler tutor. Lisa joined Music 4 U in 2007 as a participant, and since then has become a real role model. Lisa leads many of the groups and puts her heart and soul into ensuring that every participant excels through growing, believing and confidence, by having the ability to express themselves in a fun and motivating environment. Lisa absolutely adores her job and says “Knowing the service we provide has such an impact on the participants (and their families), is such a wonderful feeling and I hope I can continue to be part of this amazing charity for the rest of my life!” Lisa’s years of practice has earned her a Grade 8 Certificate in Singing.
Lisa’s words of wisdom: Wherever there’s a song, there’s a harmony.
|Stuart Rennie HNDip (Drum Tutor)|
Stuart Rennie is coming up for his tenth year at Music 4 U. He started off learning music by himself until he eventually sought tuition with Alan Benzie. Stuart is dedicated to the school and gets a lot of fulfilment from it. He enjoys seeing the group and individuals develop and become the musicians they want to be. He also enjoys seeing the process, starting from rehearsals right through to the show night. We see him as a positive role model that always encourages the group as much as he possibly can.
Stuart’s words of wisdom: It’s not what you do, it’s how you do it.
|Matthew Rose BMus (Hons) DipLCM (Music Tutor)|
Matthew is a music education graduate of the University of Aberdeen who is passionate about singing and vocal performance. He has worked with various performing arts companies in Aberdeen and Aberdeenshire as both a singing and musical theatre tutor. He also runs his own business, MJR Vocal Tuition. To compliment his teaching, Matthew regularly performs in amateur productions, either as part of the cast on stage, or as a musician in the pit. He has also taken on the role of Musical Director for various companies including Lyric and Aberdeen Student Show.
Matthew’s words of wisdom: Everyone may not be able to sing, but everyone can learn how to sing.
|Emily Watt HNDip (Enabler Tutor)|
Having been a participant at Music4U at a young age, Emily recently began working within the charity as an Enabler Tutor with the IPADS group, 2 days a week. Emily studied at North East Scotland College for 2 years and graduated in 2018 with an HND in Music. During her studies she had vocal lessons at Grade 7. She is also self taught in a number of instruments, including guitar and ukulele and does regular gigs at bars and cafes in, and around, Aberdeen.
Emily's words of wisdom - Life's too short for boring hair