The Sing Up Team

See what it's like to be a part of our team

Michelle James
Chief Executive
Michelle James
I'm a violinist and singer and have been working in music education for about 30 years. A music graduate from Reading University, I've now moved back to Berkshire after a long time living in south-east London where I became a dedicated fan and season ticket holder of Crystal Palace Football Club. A passion for football is something I share with Jack, our Financial Controller. I also love being by the sea and am especially fond of Whitstable. At Sing Up I'm responsible for strategic direction and I do quite a lot of our marketing and comms work too.
Shelly Ambury
Head of Learning
Shelly Ambury
I'm a teacher, singer, vocal improviser, lover of music, good design, reading, colour, and watching contemporary dance. I’ve worked in music education for 30 years and creating access to high quality music education for children is at the heart of what I aim to achieve daily. As Head of Learning and a Board member I contribute to the strategic direction of Sing Up and the creation of content to fulfil it. I love working with this unique, quirky, and collaborative team. New to veggie growing and loving it.
Tatjana Pahaluev
Head of Operations
Tatjana Pahaluev
Originally from Germany, I have found a home in the lovely North East of England and in Sing Up over a decade ago. My work is mainly behind the scenes where I manage the web development, make sure our systems are running, and generally do my best to support everyone at Sing to do their job. Outside of work I am passionate about design, interiors and the outdoors. So on a weekend I will either be creating at home or putting on my walking boots to explore the fantastic UK countryside.
Beth Millett
Publishing Manager
Beth Millett
A singer and one-time soprano saxophonist (bit rusty now though!), I've been working for Sing Up pretty much since the beginning. Now, I mainly look after the process of creating resources for the Song Bank and website – from commissioning writers, creatives, and musicians, to editing and preparing content to make it available. I really enjoy being part of our collaborative team here. Some of my favourite things include Autumn, travel, reading, quizzes and logic puzzles, hiking in the hills, and a piping hot cup of rooibos tea. I am not a fan of wet feet or slugs.
Jack Conaboy
Financial Controller
Jack Conaboy
I have 50+ years experience as an accountant, which obviously makes me 'mature' and also well suited for my role with Sing Up as the Financial Controller, a position I’ve held for 10 years. I’m a lover of football which kind of doesn’t exactly go together with being a Sunderland supporter, but there you go. I am also a keen DIYer and use this as my ‘relaxation’ from the rigors of sitting at my desk looking after the financial affairs of Sing Up. I am neither a musician nor a singer, I leave that to my superb colleagues. I do join in the singing at our staff get-togethers though and I love it.
Celi Barberia
Head of Sing Up Foundation
Celi Barberia
A singer and music lover with a lifelong passion for the arts and education, I've been in music education for over 15 years. I've been with Sing Up since the very beginning and I’m now the Head of the Sing Up Foundation, Sing Up’s charitable arm, focussed on promoting singing for mental health and wellbeing. Outside of work, I'm a mum to two wonderful boys who I home educate and love exploring creativity, the arts and the great outdoors.
Sharon Durant
Partner Manager
Sharon Durant
I've been involved in music all my life and in music education for nearly 30 years, but I started out as a Secondary school science teacher. So I also like numbers, logic and patterns. In my role in Sing Up, I work with Music Education Hubs and help our partners to support their young people in accessing high quality music education. Outside of Sing Up, I run several community choirs, sing in the a cappella quartet Mouthful and am trying to teach myself the saxophone. Oh and, the dogs and I like digging in the garden (although I feel I'm more productive at it than they are).
William Howarth
Digital Learning Executive
William Howarth
A saxophonist, guitarist and compulsive singer, I began working for Sing Up in 2020. My role involves curating website content and creating audio and video resources. You'll be greeted by my voice when you call us over the phone. As a composition graduate, I spend time outside work writing songs and uploading my music to YouTube. I love hard-bop jazz, late Victorian architecture and getting into theological discussions.
Deborah Karoqe
Finance Assistant
Deborah Karoqe
With nearly 40 years’ office experience, I’ve been with Sing Up for over 10 years in our busy Finance Team and occasionally also support our lovely Customer Support Team. When not working, I always have my head in a book with music in the background (even when sleeping). My love of music goes back to being a baby with a diverse range of music as the soundtrack to life. I enjoy experimenting with holistic therapies and love photography, being inspired by the world around me, and hope to develop my photography skills.
Jennifer Hawkins
Customer Support Assistant
Jennifer Hawkins
Your friendly helper in Customer Support! I work in our North East office, being the first point of contact for all our Members, and you may have seen some of the illustrations I have drawn for the website too. An artist by nature, when I’m not working I enjoy painting in oils or watercolour. My work is often of local wildlife inspired from my walks in different woodlands and the countryside. I also love Moomin comics … and you can be certain there are always plenty of treats stacked in our office when I’m around.

Find out a bit more about what we do

Learning

We oversee the creation of the fantastic content you find on our website, songs, teaching resources, videos, our blog, and beyond. You might recognise some of us from our videos or we may have met at an event.

Marketing

We look after the communication with our Members, social media, the blog and much more. Please do come and say hello to us when you see us at an event or on social media.

Operations & Finance

We look after things behind the scenes, like making sure the website is running as efficiently as possible, new and exciting funcationality is developed, payments are processed, and much more.

Customer Support & Partner Memberships

We're here to talk to you about Membership and any questions you have about Sing Up. We will support our Members and partners in every way we can.

RPS Making Music Smart Teacher 2017 Teacher 2018 Besa Music & Drama Education Awards Music & Drama Education Awards 2023 Finalist