The choir has been based in the market town of Shifnal in Shropshire for over 60 years. We meet at Idsall School Sports Centre, Shifnal every Thursday at 7:30pm.
Although the choir is widely known within Shifnal, the county and beyond, in its early days it faced real difficulties.
Its first appointed conductor, Arthur Roberts, a well-known organist and choirman at St Andrew’s church in the town, died before he could take up his position. However, things improved. After a number of temporary conductors, Jim Lewis was appointed, and the choir grew quickly in numbers and reputation. In 1960, Jim lewis led the choir to their first major success at the Chadsmoor Music Festival.
In 1975, the choir appointed Peter Davies as musical director and under his leadership the choir had more success winning competitions at Blackpool, Kerry Eisteddfod and Rhumney Valley, where they were in competitions with internationally respected Welsh choirs.
The choir has travelled abroad to Germany, France, South Africa and Wales, where they reached the grand final. In more recent years the choir has won at the Biddulph Music Festival and been runner-up in the BBC Shropshire Radio Choir of the Year competition.
The musical Director is now Anne Clark who with her enthusiasm and wide-ranging knowledge of music, has moved the choir forward, introducing modern music including Adele, The Beatles and many others, including songs from France Wales, South Africa and New Zealand.
For over fifty years the choir has raised considerable funds for charity and it’s motto “to spread happiness everywhere you go with song, and laughter” continues to be central to its philosophy.
The choir consists of over 30 men with our musical director and accompanist at the helm.
Anne Clark – Musical Director
Anne became Musical Director of the choir in June 2001, having been accompanist for several years previously. She is a graduate of the Royal Northern College of Music (RNCM) and has an ARMCM piano diploma. On graduation, Anne returned to the Midlands to start her busy career as a classroom music teacher spanning 38 years. Within that time, she led various music departments culminating in a prestigious post as Curriculum Manager of Performing Arts and Director of Music at New College in Wellington. Since retiring in 2012, Anne is busier than ever as an accompanist and piano teacher. She works at the Birmingham Conservatoire as an accompanist in the ARMCM Vocal Department and is now an examiner for the London College of Music.
Jade Harris – Accompanist
Jade joined Shifnal and District Male Voice Choir in 2001 and continues to make a huge impact with her outstanding talents as a pianist. She graduated from Keele University with First Class Honours in Music and Psychology, whilst undertaking her piano studies with Royal Academy Professor, Jean Anderson. Jade has performed extensively as soloist, chamber musician and accompanist. She won a scholarship to accompany the Keele Bach Choir and has performed piano concertos with the Keele Philharmonic Orchestra, Stafford Sinfonia and Telford Orchestra. She regularly performs solo spots in choir concerts and also teams up with our Musical Director Anne Clark to form the piano duo ‘Two’s Company’. Furthermore, she has recently taken on the role of conductor for some of the choir’s newest repertoire and certainly loves putting the men through their paces! Jade enjoys a busy teaching career as Assistant Musical Director at Wrekin College in Wellington, Shropshire.