Kate Buttolph


Church Stretton Shropshire. Also working across the West Midlands and Welsh borders.


Choirs, composing, health and wellbeing groups, building self esteem for under confident singers

Additional information

I am a community arts worker living in the glorious Shropshire Hills. I ran my first choir when I was still at school and went on to develop a practice working primarily with people who had been denied a voice in some way, in many cases because they had been told they were tone deaf. I love nurturing voices and I’m always keen to work with people who have been denied opportunities to explore their potential as singers.

As a performer and writer I do a lot of cross art form improvisation and devising, which informs my participatory work.  I often record and edit voice, percussion and keyboard work with participants on a field recorder and create soundscapes in response.  Group song writing for performance is a particular love and I often use this to help develop singers’ confidence and skills of self-expression.

I’ve been lucky enough to work across England and Wales as a community arts worker, creativity consultant, singing coach, performer, composer and theatre maker. I particularly love facilitating projects with community groups and I have written music with, for example, adults and children with disabilities, mental health issues and refugees. I’ve enjoyed being a trainer and mentor for musicians in exile, care workers and school teachers.

In recent years I have chosen to work a lot with older people, including projects for the New Vic Theatre in Newcastle-Under-Lyme, Staffordshire for their Dementia and Creativity strand. I have also set up choirs and singing for health and wellbeing projects (Breathing Space) in partnership with my local community centre in Church Stretton.

I am also a member of Sound Sense, the Singing For Health Network and The Musicians’ Union.

My choirs

Breathing Space

Singing for health and wellbeing.

The Breathing Space project is currently made up of two groups:
1 A weekly dementia-friendly group focussing on the joy of singing, which is comprised of clients and carers from Mayfair’s Beacon service and carer/cared for couples in our wider community. This group is in receipt of a Power Of Music grant from the Utley Foundation.

2 A weekly group focussed more around building self esteem and mindfulness: offering nurturing support with a range of health and wellbeing needs including anxiety, chronic pain and the effects of Long Covid. I sometimes describe it as, “a sort of pilates for singers.” The group is very grateful for the support of Mayfair Community Centre.

For both groups we incorporate breathing exercises, a few familiar pieces and many songs in a wide range of styles which are new to participants. We also explore improvisation and song writing activities.

Session times

Both groups run on Wednesday afternoons, the dementia friendly group at 1.30 - 2.30pm and the weekly group from 3 - 4.15 pm. Please contact Kate for more information.

Harmony in the Hills

A thriving community choir, Harmony in the Hills is the new name for Stretton Community Singers. Based in Church Stretton the group rehearses on Thursday evenings throughout the year. The choir sings a wide array of music in harmony, including songs from a range of cultures, which we do our best to learn respectfully in accordance with the NVN ethos. We also sing early music, popular songs and specially arranged and composed pieces.

We are often asked to perform at local events and are always on the look out for opportunities where we can enjoy singing in partnership with community groups who are more marginalised and/or isolated. Members range from experienced musicians to people who never, ever thought they could sing. New singers are always very welcome and there are discounts available for family groups who want to come along to sing together.

Contact us: https://harmony-hills-choir.uk

Session times

Thursday evenings from 7.30 to 9 pm

Contact details