Kemal Yusuf in conversation with Jo Hulme
What drew you to NLC?
I had done a lot of singing at university and I wanted to join a choir once I moved to London after my degree. Whilst looking around I found that NLC had a good atmosphere and sings a variety of music. We’re doing Britten’s War Requiem in Berlin at the end of the year, which is something I’m very much looking forward to!
How did you become interested in choral singing?
I was a bit of a later starter in choral singing. There was a good scene at university and I couldn’t wait to get involved with all of the interesting music that was going on. From the first rehearsal (of Mendelssohn’s Elijah, I believe) I was hooked!
Is there someone who particularly inspired you to take part in music?
Just a really good singing scene in Bristol! I had always loved choral music and have written a lot myself.
What other musical involvements do you have?
I’m a composer and piano teacher and studied the two at university. This means writing for a variety of ensembles and performers and teaching mostly at the weekends. I also occasionally work in film. It’s a bit of a mish-mash I guess!
What have you particularly enjoyed about NLC so far?
Everyone is very friendly and the choir has a good social atmosphere and warm vibe. I particularly enjoyed our weekend away, where we had workshops, rehearsals and performances. Saying this, NLC sings some very rewarding music and, as it’s an auditioned choir, there is a real sense of dedication about the musicians involved.