Sarah is a multi-award winning singer-songwriter, actor, voice-over artist, campaigner and public speaker. She has spent many years collaborating with musicians in a variety of genres, working with legendary tutors, as well as fronting 5 bands. She has performed in venues across the UK, from small-scale to Stadium-sized venues, and has had original songs broadcast on national television, national and international radio.
Sarah is currently promoting her solo debut album of beautifully crafted indie-pop:, “Something I Couldn’t Say” (Co-
produced with platinum award winning producers Duncan & Johnny Cameron at Glasgow’s Riverside Studios) released earlier this year.
Whilst pursuing her recording and acting career, Sarah lost most of her vision at age 23, through type 1 Diabetes, as a result of a common diabetic eating disorder (EDMT1) from her late teens. After going through laser treatment and many operations and rehabilitating herself after having lost everything (job, driving licence, independence), unstoppable and unperturbed by obstacles and negative attitudes, Sarah continued pursuing her career. The experience simply made her more determined to follow her own path and become a success.
Whilst preparing for a principle role in a major stage play, in 2003, during her operations, Channel 4 approached Sarah to film an hour-long documentary on her life for their BAFTA award-winning Cutting Edge series, ‘Picking Up The Pieces’ (https://www.drg.tv/Brand/10489/picking-up-the-pieces). The documentary followed Sarah’s journey of rebuilding her life and becoming independent again, whilst pursuing her career. It also featured Sarah’s first recorded singles with Chunk Productions “Too Much Traffic” and “Rain”.
As a surprise for Sarah’s participation in the documentary, Channel 4 featured her own song “Higher Than Before” during the end credits. (The song has since been rerecorded and remixed for the album “Something I Couldn’t Say.”) The program was aired in July 2004, attracted over a million viewers and was pick of the week in all major TV reviews. After the Channel 4 programme, Sarah received an award from Leeds City Council for the performance of ‘Angel’ in the play “Freedom Sings”, (by Jenny Bowen) which was the one featured in the Picking up the Pieces documentary.
In 2005, Sarah was nominated for the Jane Tomlinson award and later became the first ever recipient of the One Vision Award for Arts and Entertainments in the UK. (This was presented to her in 2006 by the RNC, at the closing ceremony of the Old Arsenal Football ground.)
One of Sarah’s passions is raising awareness of the serious complications of Type 1 Diabetes and EDMT1. She went onto assist Diabetes UK and RNIB, along with Sir Steve Redgrave and Jimmy Tarbuck to speak in Westminster, as part of the ‘Open Your Eyes’ parliamentary campaign (a campaign to have more eye-screening equipment put into hospitals, UK-wide, to prevent sightloss in diabetics).
In 2007, Sarah performed her song “Higher Than Before” on GMTVs Lorraine, where she was interviewed as part of her diabetic advocacy work, by Lorraine Kelly on the primetime TV breakfast show.
Later that year, Sarah went on to be the face of an international online Dove campaign for their Zebra Stripes deodorant, which she co-wrote, co-directed, and played herself in, which then went on to win the 2007 Silver award in the BTAA Awards for Toiletries.
In 2007 Sarah was invited to play on the Main stage of Chapel Allerton Arts Festival in her home town, Leeds. Subsequently, she took a team of ladies (including her mum and 75 year old grandmother!) down to London, to lead them on a 5k run for JDRF’s (Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation’s) fundraiser – as they had made her their ambassador for the run.
Sarah then went on to take several lead roles in stage productions including Lucy Brown in Theatre Workshops’ production of the Threepenny Opera which did a National Scottish Tour, and the leading role of Macy in award-winning South African play “Full Circle” written by Cobus Mulman, performed at the Oval House Theatre, in London.
Following on the theme from the Channel 4 documentary, Sarah appeared in a documentary for Channel 5 called Diet Doctors, which was aired on Prime Time TV and also went on to talk on chat show ‘Doctor Doctor’.
She was chosen by BBC & Channel 4, RSC & The National Theatre, and ITV to be a part of three separate inclusive acting incentives. The ITV opportunity led her on to record a scene for Coronation Street in Roy’s Rolls. She also played a cameo role in Ricky Gervais’ Series 1, Derek.
During her rehabilitation, Sarah became inspired by volunteering with a young person’s drama group, they were afraid of going out with a white cane, because of the stigma and marginalisation they had to face, resulting in them being extremely isolated from society. To address this – as Sarah customised her own canes already, she studied with several business mentors and launched her own company ‘Crazicanes’ to assist people with sight impairment / blindness in customising their own canes.
She spent several years researching and developing the concept and the idea within the community of blind and partially sighted people, and it received much positive feedback from both users and the public at large.
Despite receiving opposition from bigger organisations – who insisted canes should be white), Sarah launched her business in 2011, which received a John Connor award for innovation and personal achievement in Edinburgh. Unfortunately, in 2013 the business had to be put on hold as Sarah’s mum developed acute myeloid leukaemia, which resulted in her being in hospital for over a year and much rehabilitation afterwards. Sarah took a long break from her career to be there for her mum. (who survived the experience!)
In between her acting and campaigning work, Sarah was also busy collaborating on various music projects and gigging around the UK, as well as recording demos of original material, working with professional producers, which were broadcast on Local FM Radio in Leeds & Scotland.
In 2015, whilst living in Edinburgh, Sarah set up the band, Vintage Marmalade, a music collective that worked around the principles of highly skilled musicians, coming together to create, record and release music professionally, around their other work, as she realised there were not many outlets for this in her local area.
Sarah collaborated with her collective, Vintage Marmalade, in the song ‘The Road’ which was played in the Scottish Parliament at Holyrood in 2015, as part of her advocacy work for EDMT1 eating disorder with MSP Dennis Robertson and Jacqueline Allan (DWED) as part of National eating disorders awareness week (https://vintagemarmalade.bandcamp.com/releases)
In 2016 Sarah wrote, co-produced and sang the theme tune 'Have a Cuppa Tea' for the National Podcast series ‘Seeing Our History’, which was broadcast over internet radio for six weeks running. The podcast series was later turned into a book, ‘Feeling our History’ written by Iain Hutchison, which also acknowledged Sarah’s lyrics (http://www.insightradio.co.uk/assets/insight-radio/RNIBFeelingOurHistory.pdf)
After coming across many accessibility barriers throughout her career and personal journey, which prevented people with sight difficulties from being included as equals and flourishing in their abilities, Sarah created #thelips. She had found that a lot of her weekly work involved speaking to numerous companies about website accessibility for screen-readers, incorrect attitudes towards people with sight difficulties and much more.
Sarah did not want to become a professional complainer. So rather, she felt she wanted to spread a positive message of thanks to companies and organisations who took the time and effort to make things inclusive on their websites or within their companies for vision impaired and blind customers. Whenever she comes across companies that make a conscious effort to be more accessible she gives them #thelips.
Sarah began work on her debut album in 2014 which was finally remixed in 2016. In March 2017, Sarah started to release singles from the album, her first ones “No More Tears” debuted on Radio Saltire’s Katie G Presents. After being played on several Scottish radio stations, it gained international acclaim, reaching no. 15 in Australian Valley FM’s Indie Charts, within a few weeks. Her second single, “If I Said”, released in July 2017, subsequently reached over 75 radio stations worldwide, including international radio show ‘Chat & Spin'.
Both singles have collectively reached over a million listeners across more than 100 radio stations, including FM, on several continents.
In Summer 2017, Sarah and her band delivered an exhilerating performance of “No More Tears” on STV's Live At Five. (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=E1DcXAf9TVg) Following this, she promoted her upcoming album during the ’17 Edinburgh Fringe.
After having recently relocated form Scotland to London, Sarah is
promoting her debut album. She released the album “Something I Couldn’t Say” through her own record label - Wings Recordings UK Ltd in Feb 2018 and the album’s promotional single ‘Stranger to me Now’ has had critical acclaim from a number of radio DJs & online reviewers (see below).
Alternative Fruit Review 1: http://alternativefruit.weebly.com/sound-read/sarah-caltieri-stranger-to-me-now-alternative-fruit
Rockstar Blog Review 2:
In January 2018, Sarah was invited to do a one woman piece in response to the #metoo campaign in a short series of plays called “The Words Are Coming Now”, at Theatre 503 in London. Written by Amy Bethan Evans, Sarah appeared in two pieces: “To Be My Eyes” and “Words”. Sarah will be performing the fully extended version of “To Be My Eyes”, in October 2018 at the Bloomsbury Festival.
“Independence rules this spirit” Alternative Fruit
"Amazing and very inspiring..."
“What a talent…!”
“Sarah Caltieri is something of a divine talent on the up. The Award-winning singer/actor has built something of a portfolio with her increasing array of capabilities.” Rockstar Poet Ansel Manderson