Mel holds an MA in Voice Studies from the Royal Central School of Speech and Drama. She trained as an actress at Queen Margaret College, Edinburgh, gained a Postgraduate Certificate of Education from Moray House Institute, is a Fellow of the Higher Education Authority and an accredited teacher of Nadine George Voice Work.
She has taught at a number of leading drama schools and training centres including, the Royal Central School of Speech and Drama, the Academy of Live and Recorded Arts (A.L.R.A), Cygnet Training Theatre (Exeter), Identity School of Acting (London), Caravanserai Actor’s Studio (London), The Centre (Woolwich), CPA Studios (Romford), King’s College London, King Street College Shepherd’s Bush, The London School of English, Edinburgh Lyceum Youth Theatre, The Millennium Dance Centre and WHALE Arts Centre.
Mel has worked with many leading voice practitioners including Cicely Berry, Barbara Houseman, Kristin Linklater, Christina Shewell, Frankie Armstrong, Vayu Naidu, Jacquie Crago, Ros Steen and Nadine George.
Internationally Mel has facilitated workshops at Teaterhögskölan Malmo, Sweden, Espace Saint-Roch, Paris, Johann School of Music and Teatru Salesjan, Malta.
Her recent production work has included Two Noble Kinsmen & The Two Gentlemen of Verona (Teatru Salesjan, Malta) Polly March, Pride and Prejudice (sort of*) (Edinburgh Lyceum) Paul Brotherston, All the Time in the World & Sheep (Tron Theatre) Martin O’Connor, Emancipation Acts (Glasgow Life/Merchant City) Alan McKendrick, Under Milk Wood (Tron Theatre) Gareth Nicholls, I Promise I Shall Not Play Billiards (Tightlaced Theatre) Jen McGregor, Touched (Cygnet Training Theatre) Amanda Knott and numerous productions for The Royal Conservatoire of Scotland.
Mel’s work remains wide and varied including clients in the business sector, teachers/lecturers, doctors, barristers, motivational speakers, the British Paralympic Curling Team and Sign Language Interpreters including a Performance Training Masterclass with the National Theatre of Scotland, Solar Bear and Access Scotland Venues.
Mel has a particular interest in working with D/deaf actors and has been instrumental in introducing Nadine George Voice Work to the BA Performance Course. Her recent publication ‘Next Year’s Words await another Voice’: British Sign Language and Voice Work with D/deaf actors at the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland can be found in the Theatre, Dance, Performance Training Journal, Volume 10, Issue 3 October 2019 published by Routledge.
Alongside Rita McDade, Mel presented A Tale of Two Cultures (PechaKucha) at the Scottish Parliament as part of Scottish Innovation 2017 and Developing D/deaf Cultural Engagement (Culture Republic) at Glasgow Film Theatre.
Research interests have included an investigation into vocal fatigue with classroom teachers and pedagogical styles in the search for a ‘free and embodied voice’. In 2011 she was research assistant to Professor Ros Steen on Earthing the Electric in collaboration with The National Theatre of Scotland and The Centre for Voice in Performance.