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We’re excited to introduce Emily Richards to the BISP family! With 14 years of experience as a Secondary Music and whole school performing arts specialist for students aged 3 to 18, Emily brings a wealth of knowledge. Originally from the UK, Emily’s expertise also extends to Theatre and Dance, and she’s had the pleasure of teaching and leading the performing arts in different corners of the world, including Tanzania, Vietnam, Oman, and Hampshire (UK).
Emily’s diverse background and experiences promise to develop the dynamic and engaging performing arts programme here at BISP. We took some time to ask her some questions and get to know her a bit more.
What is your role as Secondary Music and Whole School Performing Arts Specialist and how do you anticipate students will connect with you?
As the newest member of the BISP Performing Arts team, my primary role involves teaching Primary and Secondary students in various aspects of music and drama. I’m excited to share my passion for these disciplines and help students develop their creative talents.
I anticipate that students will connect with me through a shared enthusiasm for the arts, as I’m dedicated to creating a supportive and inspiring learning environment where they feel comfortable expressing themselves and exploring their artistic potential.
In essence, my role is to facilitate a creative and enriching experience for students while maintaining transparent and constructive communication with parents to support their children’s artistic journeys.
What attracted you to BISP?
BISP’s strong emphasis on wellbeing was a significant factor. I’m genuinely passionate about how the performing arts can positively impact the social and emotional wellbeing of young people. It’s inspiring to see BISP recognise the importance of nurturing not only academic growth but also the holistic development of students.
The school’s commitment to wellbeing aligns perfectly with my own beliefs and values. I believe that through the performing arts, we can provide students with a platform to express themselves, build self-confidence, develop empathy, and form meaningful connections with others. I look forward to helping the students thrive not only as performers but as well-rounded, emotionally resilient individuals.
What do you like to do when you’re not working?
In my free time, I love to write and perform as a singer-songwriter, drawing inspiration from folk tales, jazz, and hip hop. I often experiment with different instruments and vocal techniques, especially as I write most of my songs for a loop pedal.
When I’m not diving into my creative side, I’m into open water swimming, always aiming to beat my personal best for my last 4.5 km swim and avoid jellyfish, which is a fun challenge.
On a more personal note, I thoroughly enjoy spending time with my 3-year-old daughter, getting messy and exploring the world through her curious and imaginative eyes. Being creative and adventurous is definitely a family value!
What behaviour or personality trait do you most attribute your success to, and why?
My journey in the arts has taught me the importance of keeping an open mind, which I believe has contributed significantly to my success. In the creative field, we quickly realise that everyone has their unique creative process, and it’s this diversity that makes the arts so dynamic and inspiring.
What advice would you give to your teenage self?
If I were to offer advice to my teenage self, I’d share my husband’s favourite quote by Marianne Williamson and tell my younger self that it’s okay to be different.
“Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us.”