Step into My Parlour

Step into My Parlour

One day while Michelle and her sister Laura were having biscuits, cakes, club orange and chatting a mile to the dozen, they came up with an idea by accident. It evolved into Michelle’s sell out 2012 Edinburgh Fringe Festival Show ‘Step into my Parlour’.

This show is a collection of songs from the Irish tradition interspersed with stories, memories and tales in a quirky inviting parlour setting. Many of these tales came from a dusty scrapbook lying in the attic of their granddads workshop. The newspaper clippings collected by their great granny found in this cobwebbed musty gem become an integral part of the show. Live performances also incorporate art installations created by Laura Burke.

Videos from the show are now available on the Media Page.

Step into My Parlour Michelle and Laura Wanda

Nashville

Nashville

Thanks to Katherine McGillivray’s ‘Get a Life Fund’, Michelle is spending six months living in Nashville immersed in its vibrant music scene.

Alongside her touring, Michelle has recently worked for the Scots Music Group Inspire project whose aims were to encourage participation and involvement of socially excluded and vulnerable participants in folk music and singing. While working with two projects — a mental health drop-in centre and a charity working with young people affected by homelessness — Michelle was commissioned to compose music inspired by the project for the participants that she was working with. As a traditional/folk singer, writing songs for this commission was a new challenge for Michelle and the experience has inspired her to continue to develop these skills as it will add a whole new dimension to her as a musician.

Since she was small Michelle always wanted to go to Nashville. While touring with Irish/American trad band Cherish the Ladies, Michelle got the opportunity to play concerts in Nashville and attend sessions, and she loved the friendly and heightened musical environment. Initiated by her work with the Inspire project and a new desire to create her own songs, Michelle will spend time focusing on developing her songwriting potential in Nashville’s dynamic songwriting culture while collaborating with songwriters and attending workshops.

Michelle will update the site with all the news and stories about her sojourn.

Nashville Boots

Duo & Trio

Duo & Trio

Michelle has collaborated for many years with Scottish pianist/composer James Ross (www.jamesrossmusic.co.uk).

Michelle and James regularly collaborate with musicians and recently toured with Scottish multi-instrumentalist Matheu Watson (www.matheuwatson.com) and Anna Massie (www.annamassie.com).

Two Goofey Kids

Education & Workshops

Education & Workshops

Michelle is an experienced music educator and has worked as a singing teacher and workshop facilator for many organisations and groups over the years.

In June 2013 Michelle was commissioned by Enterprise Music Scotland’s small traditional arts fund to pilot a project for creative work with older people. Michelle tailored the framework of the show ‘Step into my Parlour’ and delivered a series of workshops in Corstorphine Dementia project and Murrayfield Care home in Edinburgh.
This model involves a series of reminiscence workshops in which participants can access their own stories and memories to create their own ‘parlour’. The project includes: singing together, dancing, visual art, crafts (e.g. knitting), storytelling, sharing memories and experiences.

In November 2013 Michelle was commissioned by Aberdeen Council’s, Creative Communities to deliver a 4 week Arts project based on the ‘Step into my Parlour’ model.

Michelle worked with Scots Music Group’s Inspire Project (2010-2011). The project worked in partnership with homeless and mental health charities in Edinburgh to broaden access to traditional music, and to create new music in collaboration with the participants. Michelle delivered workshops in two projects, a mental health drop-in centre and a charity working with young people affected by homelessness. Michelle was also commissioned to write new music involving participants.

Michelle has delivered workshops and taught with the following organisations:

  • Loretto Secondary School, Musselburgh
  • Feis Rois
  • Edinburgh Youth Gaitherin’
  • Care for Carer’s
  • American International School, Lusaka, Zambia
  • Scot’s Music Group
  • Mid- Lothian Council
  • Y2K Drop–in Centre, Easthouses
  • HorseCross Voices- Perth
  • Corstorphine Dementia Project, Edinburgh
  • Murrayfield Care Home, Edinburgh
  • Aberdeen Creative Communities
  • Scottish Storytelling Centre, Edinburgh
  • The Rock Trust, Edinburgh
  • The Stafford Centre, Edinburgh

To enquire about music workshops or singing lessons contact: michelleburkemusic@yahoo.co.uk

Education Picture