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Meet Our Students: Ashleigh Dowler

Wednesday 28th February 2024

Ashleigh Dowler is a professional voice teacher and vocalist working in Manchester, England. He trained at Ellio-Clarke Theatre School in Liverpool for two years at the age of 16 and then went on to study a HE Certificate in Creative Musicianship at The Institute of Contemporary Music Performance in London.

As a vocalist, his career has covered session work, performances at music festivals, function bands and long-term contracts at sea, as well as national and international theatrical tours and productions. He has performed at Manchester Pride, Cambridge Jazz Festival and Factory International.

Ashleigh began his coaching journey fairly young, becoming the assistant musical director and vocal coach at a local YMCA Theatre Group in his hometown of Southport while still in his teens. He is certified to EMT-C level and is currently completing his final observations to gain his Estill Master Trainer badge. Ashleigh is experienced in teaching a vast range of clients in both singing and spoken voice, from professional singers to passionate hobbyists, alongside actors/performers, workshop leaders and other professional voice users. He really believes that vocal coaching should be accessible to all who wish to explore it, and an open, flexible approach in the studio combined with up to-date information and knowledge is paramount to this.

After considering an MA to enhance his practice for several years, his interest was piqued by the remote (online) aspect of the Voice Study Centre’s pathway and the sheer variety of lectures and content available. “The remote aspect and the fact that the course is designed with working voice teachers in mind was a huge tick for me”, he noted.

Ashleigh starts his MA journey with the VSC in April; in the meantime he has enjoyed the opportunity to gain “a variety of different teaching tools and perspectives” through attending weekly online short courses such as ‘An Exploration of Mixing’ with Amanda Flynn. At the time of writing, he is about to complete accreditation for the ‘Certificate in Gender-Affirming Voice & Communication Coaching’ with Gillie Stoneham, describing the course as “both educating and challenging”. “The information on how to deliver effective training and how to create safe spaces for people to feel comfortable exploring voice, in what can be a very vulnerable way, has been a fundamental learning experience for anyone looking into providing this type of voice coaching”, he added.

Ashleigh is excited to see where this next chapter of professional development will take him and is “very much looking forward to being able to ‘geek out’ and deep dive into a variety of voice-related topics”, especially the spoken voice and the crossover between effective performance coaching and neuroscience.

Looking further into the future, Ashleigh plans to expand his one-to-one coaching to reach more people via larger workshops and utilise other opportunities to “inspire more people into growing as artists, singers and speakers”. He also says he’d like to maintain a lecturing position at a university or academy one day.

Before all that though, he is hosting a variety of music events and gigs in 2024, the first one being Ethereal Icons in Manchester City Centre on Thursday 28th March. This event explores the music of some of his favourite vocalists and artists with magically haunting voices, including Dionne Warwick, Kate Bush, Nina Simone and more.

You can find out more about Ashleigh at: https://www.vocalcoachashleigh.co.uk/

Ashleigh Dowler

Ashleigh Dowler is a professional voice teacher and vocalist working in Manchester in the northwest of England. He trained at Ellio-Clarke Theatre School in Liverpool for two years at the age of 16 and then went on to study a HE Certificate in Creative Musicianship at The Institute of Contemporary Music Performance in London.


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