- Simon Chate
- Contact Simon
So, who is this Simon Chate bloke anyway?
Simon Chate (B.Cont.Mus & Grad. Dip. Ed.) is a musician and music educator living and working in the Northern Rivers region of New South Wales, Australia. He is currently employed as a music teacher at Alstonville High School, Alstonville, N.S.W. where he teaches kids from 12 to 18 years of age.
He has a lovely Scottish partner, Shirley Robertson, and together they have two gorgeous kids - Jessica, aged 10 and Ewan aged 6.
Simon first learnt to sing in Sydney back in the mid 1980's, with respected Young Opera teacher, Alan Hendrie. He studied with Alan for over four years and was considered by Alan to be a tenor of tremendous potential.
In the early 1990's Simon packed up his life in Australia and went to England for six years. During this time he started his own teaching practice, teaching singing to beginners and those who were "too frightened" to ever consider singing. His catchy ads read "Singing for Beginners and the Terrified" and they were a tremendous success! Whilst in the UK, Simon continued to perform as a singer/songwriter around the Somerset area and spent a considerable time working with master craftsman, Roger Frood, making hammered and Appalacian dulcimers.
In 1996 Simon had a major musical milestone moment when he signed up to sing with the Glastonbury based "Avalonian Freestate Choir" led by the extraordinary Sally Pullinger. He sang tenor and baritone with them for just under a year and in that time his passion for all things choral was born.
In 1997, Simon returned to Oz and moved to the beautiful Blue Mountains, West of Sydney, a land very dear to his heart, and began a thriving practice teaching singing and guitar to many of the locals including author Patti Miller, who wrote of several of their singing lessons in her best selling book "Whatever the Gods Do", published by Random House. He was also a regular at the local Blackheath folk club during this time as well.
One year later, Simon moved to Mullumbimby, Northern N.S.W., and he combined his teaching practice with studies in Contemporary Music, majoring in Voice, at Southern Cross University, Lismore where he ultimately attained his bachelors degree in Contemporary Music and his Graduate Diploma of Education.
During his years at University (1999 - 2005) Simon joined internationally renowned vocal ensemble Isabella A Cappella as tenor 2 where, under the tutelage of Jude Magee, he toured internationally on five occasions - four times to Japan and once to New Zealand. As well as singing, Simon was also the group's manager for six of his nine and a half years.
In early 2001, Simon met Shirley and they settled in Alstonville, N.S.W. Simon then formed a local community choir, Voices in the Roar, and was also head-hunted to the position of Musical Director for the Coolangatta-based group, Ancestral Tones. Simon remains their musical director, although the group has undergone a major transition and is now the well-respected, highly entertaining "super-group" Men Wot Sing.
In July, 2011, Simon began his most recent venture, a 30-something strong community choir, based in Alstonville NSW, called Awesome Voices. Though they're still very new, the group is sounding fantastic - expect great things from this choir! Watch this space!