About MusicSmart

About Us

MusicSmart's Hilary and Paula

MusicSmart’s Hilary and Paula (photo credit: LDCapturedImages)

Our Story

Choir concerts, school musicals, stage productions, singing workshops – whatever projects Hilary and Paula have been involved with together, you can be sure they have created some amazing memories and laugh-out-loud moments! After nearly twenty years of working together in West Sussex, their Community Choirs, teaching, playing piano and singing are all bringing them joy.

Hilary Bishop and Paula McGovern took the decision to form their MusicSmart partnership in 2017. This evolved from a shared passion for music and a joint belief in the benefits it can bring to everyone. People love singing, whether or not they can hold a tune, people understand that there is something positive and healthy about singing in a choir. It is that energy that Hilary and Paula aim to tap into and spread throughout the MusicSmart Community. Hilary and Paula are always looking for new ways to build on their ideas and support the growth of local choirs and singing.

“Music takes dedication, sometimes many hours of planning or rehearsal. Then comes the moment to let the worries go, enjoy creating the music and let its message speak loud and clear. Working with Paula has given me the confidence to trust in that process and have so much fun along the way.”

“Since starting our business, we have never looked back and working together brings us so much enjoyment. Sharing our love and passion for music, we can hopefully inspire others to experience the absolute joy that making music can bring.”

Hilary Bishop, MusicStart

Hilary Bishop (photo credit: LDCapturedImages)

Hilary Bishop

Hilary is a professional and committed musician who has directed choirs and performed as a singer and an accompanist throughout her career. With great passion for singing, she is keen to support the musical development of her singing students and build new enthusiasm in choirs.

Achieving an honours degree from Trinity College of Music, Hilary’s love of singing has led her to perform as a soloist in venues including the Royal Albert Hall and the Southbank Centre. Whilst living in London she was also a member of the BBC Singers and many other professional choirs.

Hilary strongly believes in the benefit and value that music and singing can bring to everyone. She has an Advanced Diploma in Counselling and Psychotherapy and has worked in prisons, care homes and with people on the autistic spectrum.

Paula McGovern, MusicSmart

Paula McGovern

Paula McGovern

Paula is an experienced, professional and passionate teacher of music. She teaches Pianoforte and Theory and has taught Music from KS1-KS5, GCSE and “A” Level. With great passion for music, Paula is keen to support the personal and academic development of students in Music Education. Consistently excellent results have proved Paula’s academic, encouraging, caring and supportive teaching skills.

Paula has an Honours Degree from the University of Chichester, LRAM and LTCL Teachers’ Diplomas and ALCM Performers’ Diploma.

With over thirty years’ experience as a Musical Director for various amateur companies, Paula has enjoyed leading successful musicals at The Minerva Theatre, Chichester and other venues on the south coast and in Somerset.

Paula is also an accomplished accompanist, playing for weddings, events and examinations.

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