meet the pop voices team

Clare Lahive

Choir Leader

As a child, Clare grew up in a house where you either had to love reading or music, there was no television! Both of her parents were academics, their house was filled with books and musical instruments, yet neither could play a note. Clare opted for music and taught herself to play the guitar, whistle, ukulele, and later the piano. Clare’s Grandparents came from Ireland and her Granny would delight in listening to her play old classics like Moon River.  Aged 7, Clare eventually persuaded Granny to gift them her old black and white T.V and it gave her access to the open university, where, she could learn more songs,   Much to her parent’s disgust, the T.V. arrived but when her Mother heard her mimicking all the different accents she was suddenly exposed to, she almost split her sides laughing and agreed it could stay, but restricted watching to an hour a day.

Clare’s Father was the Headteacher, and as a proud Welshman who had a beautiful baritone voice, his family sang across the valleys and Churches in Wales, and he was adamant that Clare should obtain formal musical qualifications. However, at secondary school, she was a reluctant student, despite being a shy child she was constantly told off by the Nuns for distracting the class with different impressions. Until the day when the school was entering a French singing competition, one of the contestants was taken ill. At the last minute, one of her teachers who recognised Clare as a good mimic and could copy what she heard, drafted her in, teaching the voice part on-route to the competition whilst on the bus. Amazingly they won with distinction! It gave Clare the confidence to realise that she could succeed in learning music, albeit in a different way. Later on, Clare became part of a two-part duo writing their own songs, peppered with tight harmonies. She enjoyed success on the folk scene and performed across the U.K. at various festivals for 20 years. 

Clare also enjoyed writing musical sequences, managing to sell some material to American TV, for use in dog food commercials!  In 2020, Clare composed a piece for the choir to learn virtually called ‘Come Save Me’. A beautiful song that described perfectly that particular moment in time when singing was not allowed in person. In July 2022 Clare was part of the Pop Voices choir that performed at the opening ceremony for the Birmingham Commonwealth Games and also travelled to New York to perform at Carnegie Hall in a capella concert led by the Pitch Perfect films Director Deke Sharon.

Now Living and working in Wales, Mum to two grown up Daughters and proud owner of Bryn the black and white Cavachon, whose favourite place to sit is under the piano whilst it’s being played. Clare is passionate about raising money for local causes, by arranging music events that can be accessed and enjoyed by all. She is most comfortable performing alongside others and loves the way the different voice parts add rich layers to the whole performance.  She is both proud and privileged to be part of bringing Pop Voices to Pembrokeshire.  Music is her absolute love, Pop Voices has been her salvation through a period of illness and isolation, she loves learning new material, laughter, meeting new people and is excited to grow our Pop Voices family here in Pembrokeshire.