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In the Spotlight: Fred Crayk


Published on: Thursday 25th May 2017

Posted in:  In the spotlight

What is your role at Sound Training?

F: Teacher

Before working at Sound Training, what was the most unusual or interesting job you’ve ever had?

F: The most unusual job I’ve had: being Santa Claus at Edinburgh’s Waxworks museum many Christmas moons ago. (The only double bearded Santa ever as far as I know! Only one child out of approximately 1500 spotted it.)

The most interesting job, apart from Sound Training that is, is lecturing in cultural theory and art history in various institutions of higher education.

How did you first learn about Sound Training?

F: From an advertisement in the local press… The Southwark Advertiser.

How has Sound Training helped you in your career development?

F: I’ve semi-retired now… though at most times it does not feel like that! Sound Training has allowed me to assist young people to improve their reading and comprehension skills BEFORE they go to university. When I was lecturing full-time, in tutorials, I frequently came across students who were challenged by polysyllabic words and effectively couldn’t read or comprehend them. Sound Training offered an opportunity to do something about that before they entered the hallowed halls of higher education and thus equip them with the thinking tools they require when faced with challenging texts on often arcane subjects.

What is your proudest moment at Sound Training?

F: Seeing young people, who hitherto found reading challenging, suddenly ‘seeing the light’ and using the techniques introduced to articulate accurately and define words succinctly and not getting tongue tied in anecdote.

Best vacation you’ve been on?

F: Venice 2003 with much time spent in the Accademia and, of course, the best osterias.

Do you recall any embarrassing moments at work?

F: Can’t recall any embarrassing moments I’m prepared to admit to!

If you could witness any historical event, what would you want to see?

F: Diego Velazquez painting Las Meninas, 1656

People would be surprised if they knew:

F: Although Scots, I was born in Portsmouth and brought up in Malta. You’d never guess from the accent.

What is the best book you have ever read?

F: Difficult one this one: one of four:

– Friedrich Nietzsche’s ‘The Birth of Tragedy,’

– Charles Dickens’ ‘Little Dorrit’

– Mikhail Bulkagakov’s ‘The Master and Margarita’

– James Hogg’s ‘The Private Memoirs and Confessions of a Justified Sinner.’

I could go on!