Kathy Doolan, the founder and MD of Rhythm Time, was born in Aberdeen, the younger of two children. Kathy started singing at an early age because of her father’s love of music and although money was tight her parents bought her a piano and sent her for lessons. This changed everything in Kathy’s life. She practised hard and found that she had a love and an aptitude for the keyboard.
Kathy received a full grant and was able to study music at the Royal Scottish Academy of music and drama in Glasgow followed by a year at Moray House in Edinburgh where she gained a diploma in secondary and primary teaching.
In 1989 Kathy got married and whilst living in New Zealand she had a first child. Being a first-time mum and a musician Kathy found herself naturally singing dancing and doing rhythmic work with her daughter. She was amazed at how doing these simple musical activities helped her daughter’s confidence,speech and general development. As music is her passion Kathy wanted to share this with as many other parents and children as possible.
Kathy gradually developed a set of progressive music courses for preschool children and the company Rhythm Time was born. Kathy had no business experience and in those days when she started there was no Internet, so it all began with leaflets, a bag of instruments and a cassette tape recorder. The company has flourished over the years moving and changing with the times. Rhythm time has been running for over 21 years and has been franchised for 17 of these. There are now over 12,000 children attending weekly with parents and we now have classes in nurseries, special-needs schools and hospitals.
Kathy still loves playing the piano, singing, walking and doing Zumba in her spare time. Kathy is delighted that she has realised her dream of bringing music into the lives of so many families, enhancing their development and giving children the best start musically.
Supporting the EWIF Mission
I have been a member of EWIF for a few years, and am now delighted to be one of their partners.
I have found EWIF to be friendly, informative and a valuable community where we can network, support each other and share ideas. The EWIF regional meetings and conferences are very inspiring, where we hear from the experts and I have always left with some great tips to move my business forward. I only wish it had been around when I started. I would encourage anyone to join.