Our leaders


Nickomo Clarke (our Choirmaster since 2000; our leader for the Autumn and Spring terms)

 Nickomo is a musician, singer, composer and arranger specialising in acappella harmony music of various genres for mixed-gender natural-voice groups. He is best known internationally for his ‘Harmonic Temple pieces, the eitghth volume of which was released in 2017. For many years he taught and performed African and Eastern-European songs with the group ‘Sunshine in the Ears’, and also performed and arranged songs as founder-member of the legendary ‘Beachpersons’ acappella sextet.

As well as Bath Community Singers, he currently co-leads the 140-voice ‘People of Note’ community choir in Bristol, and the Frome Community Choir, as well as giving voice workshops in the UK and Europe with his wife and fellow voice teacher Rasullah. Nickomo is an organiser of the annual Unicorn Natural Voice Camp in Dorset and a member of the Natural Voice Network.


Clara Atkins (leader Summer Term 2017 & 2018)


I run two community choirs called Clarity Choir, which I lead using the principles of the Natural Voice Network. I was trained using this method by experienced choir leader Candy Verney. Everything I teach is taught by ear and unaccompanied. I enjoy singing songs from around the world in a variety of languages and styles. 
I believe that singing in a choir is as much about the social aspect as it is about the singing. Let’s have some fun!





Sheila Tang (leader Summer Term 2014 - 2016)

Sheila is a qualified teacher, musician and choir leader. She shares beautiful songs from around the world with a warm teaching style. Since 2007, she has been director of the friendly and vibrant Easton Community Choir in Bristol and now also runs Cotham Soul Gospel Choir. For the past 14 years, she has also been running choir workshops at Rainbow Futures camps, The Music Camp and summer festivals such as Sunrise, Waveform as well as local events and Arts Trails.

Sheila also runs the Forest of Dean Singing Camp, held at a magical retreat in the Wye Valley. As a member of the Natural Voice Practitioners Network, she follows the principles and ethics of the NVPN.



Ali Orbaum (Leader for half of Summer Term 2014)

Ali Orbaum has been running hugely popular singing workshops around the country for the past 17 years in arts centres, festivals, work places, schools and community spaces. She is co-founder and director of Bristol’s 160 strong Gasworks Choir which she formed with Dee Jarlett in 1997. Previously co-director of the award winning acappella group Naked Voices and vocalist with the Sweet Soul Sisters and The Tea Ladies, she currently leads Handfuls of Harmony with primary school pupils, teachers and parents in BS3 and is the musical director for Sing for Water West which has so far raised over £150,000.00 for Water Aid.  Ali teaches at the Bristol Community Choir Conventions and at Unicorn Voice Camps and her arrangements are sought out by choirs around the country. She also runs singing holidays as a core member of the Sing Your Socks Off team.





Candy Verney (leader Summer Term 2013)

Candy Verney's passion is to inspire and create, through singing, a sense of harmony which gives an experience beyond the ordinary.  

Over the last 15 years, Candy developed and directed a group of 5 choirs in Bath and West Wiltshire, called Singing in the Round, that joined together to celebrate seasonal festivals in special places. This has been the catalyst for many other choirs forming, so that now, every town in the area has a community choir.

Candy's work encompasses singing holidays in wild places; Soul Soundings; community choirs teacher trainings; singing projects; choirs and workshops; singing in business. She is in regular demand throughout the UK and mainland Europe.

Candy has written two books, the Singing Day and the Singing Year, published through Hawthorn Press, and is a member of the Natural Voice Practitioners Network.



Jon Conway (leader Summer Term 2011 & 2012)

JonJon has been singing, directing, coaching and performing in Harmony groups for over 20 years. He teaches many styles of singing including classical SATB, Taize, Gospel, Georgian, Sacred songs from various religions and cultures, Rock and Pop as well as his own a cappella arrangements.

Though he teaches many styles of music his specialty is Barbershop Harmony. He has been in several successful Barbershop quartets winning a total of 8 National medals including 3 Bronze, 3 Silver and 2 Gold. He has represented the UK at two International Barbershop competitions in Pittsburgh and Salt Lake City.

His workshops take him all over Europe including UK, Ireland, Holland, Italy, Prague and Spain. Many of these events allow people with very little singing experience to discover the wonder and joy of creating harmonies through song.

He is a significant force in the education of Harmony singing and Chorus Directing in BABS (The British Association of Barbershop Singers) and Making Music (a national organisation of over 2800 musical groups).

His noted quartet appearances include Disney World, Goodwood Revival, Orient Express and National TV including “You Bet”, “Terry and Gabby”, “Emmerdale” and “Ant & Dec’s Saturday night takeaway” as the coach for teaching Ant’s team of celebrities.

Jon also teaches at the Unicorn Natural Voice Camp where over 400 people gather together to experience a diverse range of world harmony songs.

He currently sings Bass in the Frome based A Cappella quartet 'The B Naturals'.



Fran Bolton (leader Summer Term 2010)

 Fran has been involved in running popular singing workshops for the last six years at arts centres and festivals, and for singing groups around the country.

A qualified teacher who has worked in various schools over the last 15 years, she also has extensive experience as a singer, performing a wide ranging repertoire from Mozart to Motown.

Fran runs an all-female Bristol based choir, the Stepford Singers, she teaches on workshops and on singing holidays in Britain and Europe as part of the Sing Your Socks Off team and performs as part of the 5-piece acapella group, the Barefooters. She was a member of the 16-piece acapella group Naked Voices and was a co-director of the big Bristol Voices choir with Chris Samuel (who led Bath Community Singers in the summer term of 2009).


Chris Samuel (leader Summer Term 2009)

 Chris has been teaching vocal harmony since he joined Bristol-based Naked Voices in the early noughties,

He now runs 3 community choirs in Wiltshire, has been joint MD of Bristol Voices since 2007 and has most recently started VoxBox Rocks (www.voxbox-rocks.com) where rock, soul and funk classics are learned with backing tracks and performed with a live band!
He also undertakes one-off workshops for schools, other choirs and even birthday parties and as part of Sing Your Socks Off (www.singyoursocksoff.co.uk), runs singing holidays in the UK and Europe.
He performs with Aussie festival favourites The Spooky Men's Chorale (www.spookymen.com) when they visit the UK and is a passionate supporter of Sing for Water and last year co-organised the Big Sing in Bristol Harbourside raising £37,000 for WaterAid.