Heralding from one of Britain’s top jazz families with brothers Tom and Phil Bancroft, the early part of her career saw her performing in Britain and Europe at major jazz festivals and clubs, and on regular broadcasts for BBC Radio 2 and Radio Scotland. She then moved south to take up post as Britain’s first Jazz Education Development Officer, during which time she honed her skills as a songwriter and a music educator. Following her return back to Scotland in 1993, Sophie has gone on to have a highly successful career as a singer-songwriter performing, broadcasting and recording her own compositions with a unique blend of jazz and folk influences. Recent showcases supported by Creative Scotland inlcude performances of her original songs with phenomenal American jazz pianist Louis Durra during the prestigious ‘MADE IN SCOTLAND SHOWCASE 2013’ at the Edinburgh International Fringe Festival, and with her duo Bancroft & Lyne at the ‘MADE IN THE UK SHOWCASE 2014’ at the Rochester International Jazz Festival in New York.
Forays in to the world of electronic music have led to her songs being used on US hit TV shows such as ‘Six Feet Under’, several reaching top 10 slots in various dance charts as well as a performance at the esteemed South By Southwest Music Festival 2001 in Texas. Her acoustic songs meanwhile are being recorded and performed by various artistes including American jazz pianist Louis Durra and multi-award winning jazz vocalist Liane Carroll who has recorded Sophie’s ballad, Calgary Bay, with the Prague Philharmonic Orchestra orchestrated by Chris Walden, for her most recent, highly-acclaimed CD ‘Ballads’ released on Quietmoney Records. A publishing deal with Bug Music in Los Angeles, various song representation contracts with other labels and music libraries in the USA and a licensing deal in Asia have also ensued.
Sophie has released 8 albums to critical acclaim on her own label, LisaLeo Records – please visit the Shop page for full details.
As well as concerts under her own name, Sophie’s performance work also includes gigs with accordionist virtuoso Martin Green’s innovative band The Green Machine, supporting various artists such as Martin Hayes, Bert Jansch, toured and worked in the compelling duo settings of Sophie Bancroft & Sandy Wright, Sophie Bancroft & Gina Rae and The Two Tall Girls with Canadian cellist, Christine Hanson, to name but a few.
Sophie is one of the most in-demand jazz vocal teachers in Britain, with a very busy private tuition schedule as well as having been or being a regular tutor at the Royal Conservatoire Scotland, City Of Edinburgh Music School, University of Strathclyde, University of Newcastle, University of the Highlands and Islands and the Mediterranean Jazz School. She also organises vocal jazz workshops around Britain with her workshop colleagues Liane Carroll, Sara Colman and Fionna Duncan.