Former student Lois Paton talks about her time at KEGS and what she has been up to since leaving college in 1998.
When Lois Paton (then Mugleston) joined Kegs in 1996 she was considering both music and medicine as a career. Lois has been musical from a young age; playing the piano, french horn, guitar and performing in groups from the age of nine.
At that time there was no Music or AS level option at KEGS so Lois took Biology, Chemistry and Maths A levels.
After achieving ABB Lois went on to medical school in Liverpool and after five years of studying she became a doctor.
“I practiced as a doctor in the UK for 3 years before moving to New Zealand in 2006. I passed my GP exams in New Zealand and opened my own medical clinic there with my husband. We built up the business and then sold it before returning to the UK to be closer to family in March 2015.”
After building on her previous music experience, playing in bands and orchestras, Lois then got asked to write the music for a film ‘Please Forgive Me’ which went to Delhi International Film Festival.
“After that I was hooked and there was no turning back! I started exploring further study options in the music area and decided to apply for an MA in professional media composition – music for film, games and TV, based at the University of Chichester in the UK.”
She subsequently scored ’Tunnel’ which was a finalist in Tropfest and was aired on the Rialto channel in New Zealand. Since then she has written music for 34 films, written musical arrangements for ‘Tombooks’ app, and produced audio for various games.
“I started Skylark Music in July 2015. I was accepted onto the MA programme and commenced that in September 2015. Since then I’ve continued to build on my knowledge and skills and have written music for nationally aired TV commercials (MTV, Sky Movies in NZ), TV shows in the UK, games, radio productions (Vintage Radio UK), and lots of short films. I’ve also been teaching piano, which I love. I’m now essentially looking at a career change where medicine takes a back seat and I eventually retire from it altogether in favour of music.”
Along with setting up a new business and having 2 children Lois also had to go through the process of getting her New Zealand GP qualifications recognised in the UK. She completed this process in November 2016 and was finally able to start work as a GP in the UK.
“I have no regrets about the path I’ve taken, albeit a rather circuitous route to where I am now! I LOVED my time at KEGS, I still remember all my wonderful teachers, the atmosphere was so supportive, and I loved that I was encouraged to become self directed in my learning as well as develop as a person.”