Southbank Centre Voicelab
Between November 2006 and May 2013 Mary created and directed a new initiative for the Southbank Centre called Voicelab on the invitation of Jude Kelly, its Artistic Director. Mary's roles have been varied - she has auditioned, selected, trained, coached and conducted a vast array of music across diverse styles and genres. She has worked with amateur choristers, and both developing and experienced professional soloists, and Voicelab has over 2,000 active members.

Mary has also been casting director and vocal coach for a number of professional Southbank Centre productions, including Carmen Jones (Summer 2007), The Wizard of Oz (Summer 2008), and the acclaimed BBC Concert Orchestra production of Kurt Weill's Lost in the Stars:
"Mary King (vocal coach and casting director) should be applauded for nursing a richly diverse group of voices through this difficult, searching, angular music." The Independent

Voicelab moving images

Students from Pulse
photo © P.Alex Thompson

Carmina Burana
photos © Kieron McCarron

Handel Choral Club
photo © Kieron McCarron

Mary introduces Voicelab

Other projects:
  • a performance of Beethoven's Ninth Symphony, involving 1600 amateur singers, in a new translation by Billy Bragg (reprised in front of the Queen at the RFH's official re-opening)
  • The Singing River: a piece by Orlando Gough which involved 500 singers on boats on the Thames
  • the selecting and training of a choir for War Oratorio: a new commission from Channel 4 with music by Dominic Muldowney
  • training a choir for Flamenco guitarist and composer Paco Peña's Requiem for the Earth; and Flamenco Requiem
  • selecting and training a 38-piece male voice choir and then conducting them on stage with the Brit and Mercury Award-winning band Elbow, for their sell-out Meltdown concert
  • selecting and rehearsing two choirs for the Christmas show Lost & Found Orchestra from the founders of STOMP
  • training choirs for performances of standard classical works including Carmina Burana, Mahler's 2nd Symphony with Marin Alsop and Handel's Messiah with Harry Christophers
  • forming and training choirs for the London Jazz Festival as support acts to Naturally 7 and Bobby McFerrrin
  • creating and training a choir for Sandi Toksvig's Christmas Cracker and three years of the Women of the World festival - where repertoire has ranged from Hildegard of Bingen to Annie Lennox
  • leading numerous workshops as part of the year-long Bernstein Project, and casting and coaching the singers for a performance of his seminal work Mass, with a cast of over 500
  • spearheading the development of the Chorus Festival an annual event which opens the Southbank Centre to hundreds of choirs and seeks to raise awareness of the benefits of singing through themed workshops, discussions and performances
  • selecting and training performers - both choral and solo - for performances with folk band Bellowhead to celebrate everything from Valentine's Day to Folk against Fascism
  • devising a year-long programme (PULSE) of practical study and skill development for singers interested in exploring music of more than one genre, leading to performances across the site
  • devising concepts, selecting repertoire and training a range of singers for themed productions in the external spaces of the site involving hundreds of performers to celebrate The Festival of Britain and The Festival of the World.
  • Songs my mother taught me in the Purcell Room, a programme of folk-inspired British and middle-European classical vocal repertoire from the early 20th century as part of The Rest is Noise festival