‘He was my support act!’ – Ed Sheeran’s singing teacher recalls early concert with ‘humble’ star
PUBLISHED: 14:52 02 September 2019 | UPDATED: 14:52 02 September 2019
Not many people can say they have shared a stage with a global superstar – but for Ed Sheeran’s former singing teacher, it was just another day at the office.
He may have performed in front of thousands in Chantry Park this summer, but Charity Quin remembers a time when a fresh-faced Ed took to the stage as her support act at a parish church in Framlingham.
"He played brilliantly," she said.
"He did such a cracking job - everybody absolutely loved him. It was a full house."
Ms Quin, a folk singer-songwriter, said she was "moved" by Ed Sheeran's music while teaching him to sing at Thomas Mills High School in Framlingham.
She described the Suffolk star as "polite", "humble", and "incredibly hardworking", and said teaching him was a "privilege" - recalling many lessons where she would enjoy harmonising with his original songs, while Ed strummed along on his guitar.
"I think he came to me in Year 7. He was quite little," she said.
"When I was teaching at Thomas Mills I used to do a singers' concert, which was for everyone to have a go.
"I think he had heard about it and he wanted to know if he could come along and play the guitar. I remember looking at him and thinking: 'Yeah, that sounds great.'
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"I am not sure when he started to come to me for lessons - maybe a couple of years after that. He was in a group with three other people."
Later on, Ed began attending solo lessons where he would play his own tunes - some of which went on to become huge hits.
"My abiding memory is of him coming into my room and playing songs that he was writing - and what an honour that was; it was such a privilege," Ms Quin said.
"He would come into my room with his guitar and play his latest songs - some of those have been on albums.
"The thing about him is his music moved me. I just wanted to really encourage him because I could see he had a great talent.
"I think, most of all, the thing that I encouraged him to do was to have the right attitude in the music business.
"I have to say, that boy was polite, he was incredibly hard-working, he was very humble - he's just a nice guy."
Ms Quin also heaped praise on Ed's parents and fellow teacher Richard Hanley, who taught him music at Thomas Mills, adding: "His mum and dad were amazing - absolutely 100% behind him and wanting him to take every opportunity he could."
"Richard Hanley is amazing at encouraging musical talent."
A keen performer herself, Ms Quin has recently released a new single called 'Rainbows in the Dust'. On her website, she states: "I am told that my songs have a healing and soothing quality, which I guess we all need in these times."
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