I am passionate about music and arts education and believe that the performing arts uniquely support children’s educational success and achievement. I love music from many genres and write music to encourage and support learning, as well as to simply listen to and enjoy.
I specialise in conducting and leading choirs with particular expertise in Key Stages 1 and 2 and have worked in many schools in Birmingham in a broad variety of social and cultural contexts since 1996.
I have a thriving private piano teaching business, with pupils from six years to mature adults, from beginners to diploma level. This includes teaching theory and aural at all levels and working as an examiner for ABRSM. I also regularly accompany candidates for instrumental exams and organise biannual student concerts.
I am the Vocal Composer in Residence for Services for Education Music Services and compose songs and musicals for primary schools and massed-choral events. I have also worked extensively on compositions and arrangements for pre-school music and movement classes, producing the curriculum CDs for Musicshakers.
5 original songs for the Services For Education online resources platform for use in schools during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Bakertunes is a growing collection of music composed by Sarah Baker.
Music has been in my family for many generations.
My great-grandmother was a pianist for black and white movies and my grandparents, aunts and uncles, parents, cousins, brothers and sister all sing or play an instrument.
I started composing when I was about eight, having had piano lessons for a couple of years. I still remember my first piece now, based on a broken chord pattern and repetitive melody. Many hours of my childhood was spent playing duets with a friend, and then as a young teenager I started to write songs that I often sang in our local church services.
My first experience of recording for film came when I was sixteen. My Dad had made an animated video that was published by the Bible Society and I did all the background music and songs on a keyboard in one of our bedrooms at home. I loved the creativity and was totally absorbed in it all.
From 1991-1994 I took a Bmus degree at Birmingham University and studied piano with Alison Pottinger at the Birmingham Conservatoire. During these three years I specialised in performance, electronic composition and orchestration, going on to do a Masters in Performance Studies at the Birmingham Conservatoire from 1995-1997. During this time I performed in master classes, including those with Peter Donohoe and Philip Martin, and was a finalist in several competitions.
I have now worked in music education for over twenty years and have gradually developed my skills as a songwriter and arranger. The Music Shakers CD project was a great opportunity to try new styles and technologies, and I am really pleased to have worked with Starshine Music, Out of The Ark Music and Edgy Productions more recently.
I became Vocal Composer in Residence for Services for Education Music Services in 2012. Since then I have received commissions and regularly write songs for the Primary Choir which sings in the end of year Youth Prom concerts at Symphony Hall. This is a wonderful opportunity to hear over five hundred children singing together in one of the UK’s best concert venues.
And I seem to have come full circle recently in returning to the piano and writing new material for my pupils. The improvising never stopped but I have recently discovered real enjoyment in formalising the ideas and setting them in a score which can then be passed on to others. My pieces are intended to be played by pupils who want pieces of music that are easily accessible and in a contemporary style. I hope the videos give an idea of the way the music should be performed and my notes on the inspiration behind the music are informative and enjoyable to read.
It is a privilege to be a musician and to be able to share my music with others in so many different ways. I hope you enjoy exploring the site and listening to my music.