Yorkshire-born Anastasia Micklethwaite is a musical director, teacher, flautist, contralto and conductor. She has lived and worked in the UK and New York City and has toured extensively as a soloist, chorister and orchestral musician, performing at many of the world's leading concert halls. On graduating from Trinity College, Cambridge, Anastasia successfully maintained dual careers in International Banking and Musical Performance. In 2002 she set up Furness Music Centre in Cumbria and decided to focus solely on teaching and performing. Anastasia specialises in flute, voice and choral directing, whilst working in schools. She is currently the Director of Music at Casterton, Sedbergh Preparatory School in Cumbria.
Anastasia has won several major awards and competitions for her performances and has made numerous TV and radio broadcasts, in addition to commercial recordings. She feels priviledged to have studied and worked with many great musicians and conductors over the years, but is especially grateful to Atarah Ben-Tovim MBE, the late Dr Richard Marlow, the late Janet Alexander, David Butt, Dr Gordon Pearce, Michael Brewer, John Powell, John Leach, the late Morag Noble, Jeffrey Dooley, Peter Broadbent and the late Sir Neville Marriner for their guidance and friendship.
As a youngster, Anastasia was a member of the National Children's Orchestra of Great Britain and went on to perform with the National Youth Orchestra of GB and the National Youth Choir of GB. A child prodigy on the flute, she made her solo South Bank debut aged 12 and went on to study at Chetham's School of Music in Manchester. Anastasia won a Choral Exhibition to Trinity College, Cambridge, where she read music and then gained her teaching qualification. She is also an Associate of the Royal College of Music in London (flute performance).
Anastasia directed Furness Music Centre in Cumbria for 9 years and has taught in Secondary and Primary schools across Cumbria for 15 years, developing highly successful singing programmes for young voices which have been rolled out across 25 Cumbrian schools. She has a passion for community music and feels strongly that music is for all. She firmly believes in developing musical excellence and encourages young performers to be the best that they can be.
Anastasia held the post of Director of Music at St George's School, Windsor Castle, before returning to Cumbria as Director of Music at Casterton, Sedbergh Preparatory School in 2012. At Casterton Anastasia has developed a thriving music department, incorporating 5 choirs and 13 instrumental ensembles into a busy performing schedule of almost 30 services and concerts each year, and creating and delivering a unique curriculum of innovative, tailored lessons
across the school. She has also developed a new programme of
Big Sing! workshops for primary schools along the Cumbrian and Yorkshire Dales border and she enjoys devising innovative community musical projects.
In addition to her role in Casterton, Anastasia enjoys freelance work as a teacher, conductor and performer. As a singer, she is in demand as a soloist for oratorio and recital work and she currently performs with a variety of choral groups, including Vox Celestis and the Scottish Vocal Ensemble. She is a Flute Tutor for the National Children's Orchestras of Great Britain and has played with numerous noteable orchestras. Anastasia has worked as Conductor or Musical Director with a range of choirs, including The National Youth Choirs of Great Britain, The National Children's Choir of Great Britain, Dentdale Choir, Kendal Choral, Kirkby Lonsdale Choral Society and Furness Community Choir and she has directed the Children's Chorus at Lakeland Opera.
Sing Joyfully! is a new and exciting vocal ensemble which Anastasia founded in Autumn 2015. Based in the picturesque village of Casterton, at the crossroads of Yorkshire, Lancashire and Cumbria, the group explores a wide range of choral music from different genres, combining choral music training with vocal tuition. Look out for performances in beautiful and unique venues across the North, or click on the Sing Joyfully! page above, for more details.
Acclaimed as an innovator and well-known for her energetic and enthusiastic approach, Anastasia enjoys encouraging musicians of all ages and abilities to develop their love of music through performance.