Australian Pop Academy: sound advice for performers

Louise and Gareth Henderson have opened an Australian branch of their Pop Academy.Picture: Jon Hewson        www.communitypix.com.au d444923
Louise and Gareth Henderson have opened an Australian branch of their Pop Academy.Picture: Jon Hewson        www.communitypix.com.au d444923

AFTER moving from the south of England to the sunny WA coast earlier this year, Gareth and Louise Henderson say they could not have asked for much more from their dramatic sea change.

But local performers and those looking to take things to the next step could end up being the real winners.

The Hendersons each have more than a decade’s worth of experience in the entertainment industry as performers and teachers.

Gareth dreamt of being a pop star but in the end knew helping others achieve their dreams was how he could be successful in the music industry and became a vocal teacher.

The move was a successful one, with singer-songwriter Birdy just one of a number of musicians to record with him.

Wife Louise was in a band with her two sisters but her current field of expertise is in choreography, which she has put to good use while running their Pop Academy in the UK since 1997.

Since moving to Australia the pair have launched a local branch of their academy, which has taught thousands of children in the UK to perform to sell-out shows.

Gareth said the academy was all about giving youngsters the chance to shine.

“It’s designed for 7-18 year olds to get together once a week and we teach them harmonies, lead vocals and choreography to a range of up to date and classic pop songs,” he said.

“They work towards doing a number of shows each year which we hire out a theatre for, put on a proper sound system, a proper light show, and they get to basically perform as if they’re in the kind of shows they would go and watch.

“The easiest way to describe the net result is it’s kind of like a junior a gospel choir singing chart songs because they’re in big harmony, they’re all on stage singing.”

The pair have also opened a new recording studio in Yangebup. For details visit www.australianpopacademy.com.au