• The choir in 2014
    The choir in 2014
  • The choir at St Andrews Church in 2014
    The choir at St Andrews Church in 2014
  • The choir in 2011
    The choir in 2011
  • A group shot from 2007
    A group shot from 2007
  • A 'typical' audience response from the a massed choir concert at Symphony Hall in 2011
    A 'typical' audience response from the a massed choir concert at Symphony Hall in 2011
  • A rare shot of the choir from the 1950's
    A rare shot of the choir from the 1950's

Recent news,and AGM

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The recent concert at Rodington,near Shrewsbury, was well received by an enthusiastic audience, although we did experience some problems with the acoustics. However, the choir is struggling with a new line up in some areas, and it takes time to settle in with different people in different places.

“Up Town Girl” is a lively piece which we enjoy, and that gets across to the audience.

At the moment we are rehearsing “To Where you are”, which is a haunting piece dedicated to one of our followers who died last year-it will be a very emotional moment when we perform it for Lawrence, who bought the music for the choir, in memory of his wife, Jacqui.

Hopefully the seven new members who are enthusiastically joining in those rehearsals will be able to perform some parts in the next concert.We are performing with other Shifnal Choirs at St. Andrew’s Church in Shifnal on Friday, May 1st,and later in the year,on October 3rd with the pupils from St. Andrew’s school.We are hoping to arrange some concerts in the early summer when the choir is at full strength.

The AGM held this week(March 26 th.) was characterised by the genuine feeling that the choir was moving forward after a difficult few months. Anne gave a very constructive report on how she wants the choir to progress and the atmosphere was very positive. Hopefully Mike’s ideas on sending out new pieces via CD’s or memory sticks will enable us to learn more quickly.

We need more new members, we need new ideas on fund raising, we need to try to harness the support of the town in general. Anyone with any ideas contact me ASAP-anyone with a voice, come along on Thursdays!!

2015-New Year-New Challenges.

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We have had two excellent rehearsals at the start of the new year. Work is continuing on new material, and Anne is pleased with the progress. We are.looking to consolidate,and get new members upto speed on the repertoire.This may mean less concerts this  year as we move forward . It also means that we have to check carefully to ensure that we are properly balanced as a group before accepting new concerts. Hopefully, as the year progresses we can ensure that we can produce our best,rather than be concerned that  a certain section may be weaker on a particular day. Two years ago in February, we were 43 strong going off down to a competition in Torquay, confident that we could do well..

Well, as it happens, we thought that we had done well, but the judges disagreed!!

However, it shows that things can change very quickly in choirs ,and we have to believe we can get more people in over the next twelve months and move forwards together.The new recruits we have welcomed have proven to be excellent additions,and perhaps it is not an accident that they heard us at Viv’s daughter’s wedding, and were attracted by what they heard.We are available to do weddings-perhaps that is a step forwards in the right direction!!

Onwards!

Wombridge and Blists Hill-December13th 2014

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We enjoyed a really successful evening at Wombridge Church yesterday, with a varied programme of songs, solo’s and carols  It was particularly good to get the audience involved,and there were lots of smiling faces at the end.

It was a special first concert for two new singers, John and Mike, who were able to realise for the first time what it feels like to be part of the choir for real.Well done to both. It has been a great pleasure to welcome you, and we all  hope that there will be many more to come.

Sadly, Ray Smith, a member for 24 years, has decided to leave the choir,and he leaves with our best wishes.

At Blists Hill today we were blessed with good weather, and large crowds. As a smaller group than last year we had to work hard,but were well received,and enjoyed the welcome refreshments at “The Shakespeare Inn” afterwards.We are looking forward to singing at Idsall School’s Christmas concert on Thursday, and singing some carols at “The Wheatsheaf” afterwards..Hopefully singing carols at the Farmers’ market at the village hall on Saturday, will give us a chance to hand out some recruitment posters, and then we look forward to the new year, and new challenges.

Happy Christmas to all.!

Carol singing in Shifnal,as the Christmas lights are turned on.

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As we stood by the side of the stage, we must have all felt the same doubts. Absolutely hundreds of people, noise,shouting ..Absolutely not the choral setting.

But!! Fair play, we did it, we sang our stuff, and walked away feeling proud at what we had done. The crowd sang , and stayed with us,Great feeling.!Well done guys! Ged.

Recruitment Evening

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Great choice of songs from Anne and Jade.”Uptown Girl” had everyone jigging about, and it does a lot to meet and demolish the criticisms that Male Voice choirs are old-fashioned.”Moon River” was also an excellent choice,let’s hope the newcomers enjoyed it and will return next week.

Carol-singing at the turning on of the lights in Shifnal, next Friday,Dec.28th should be an enjoyable way of reminding the good people of  Shifnal that we do support the community, and are looking for new members.

Next concert-Wombridge December 13th, followed by carol-singing at Blists Hill on Dec.14th..Hopefully two new members will get to be involved in some or all of these.

Concert at Kemberton, Nov15th

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By comparison to last week, we had a large and enthusiastic audience,and the choir responded accordingly.Andrew makes a big difference to the tenors, and the whole sound was very different to last week.”Memory” went well,as did “Agnus Dei”, and it is good to see “new” pieces being incorporated into the regular repertoire. Pieces like”Nirvana” and “Shall we gather”, seem to split opinions with our regular listeners, but I thought we performed them as well as we have ever done.

The big surprise of the evening came from the solo’s where Andrew, Steve, Mike and Jade excelled-special thanks and congratulations to Andrew and his mandolin playing, after only a few weeks-fantastic!!

Onward to the recruitment evening on Thursday.7.30pm., Idsall School. What we would give for a few new tenors and basses.!!

Recruitment.

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We are holding a “Sampler” evening at Idsall School in Shifnal, on Thursday, November 20th at 7.30pm. It should provide an opportunity for anyone who has wondered about what it is like to sing in a choir like ours, to have a go. We will be looking at a new piece together for the first time, so we will all be in it together!!

Please come along and be assured of a very warm welcome, and a drink and a chat afterwards.Just give it a try!What have you to lose??

Concert at St. Mary’s Stafford,Nov 8th 2014.

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We sang a wide range of songs,and had fantastic solos from Ron and Jade.Unfortunately the church was absolutely huge, and the audience was small. However, after recent events,it was good to be singing and performing together again. We focus now on Kemberton on November 15th, and Wombridge on December 13 th, along with a joint concert with St. Andrew’s School on Dec.6th, and carol-singing on14th Dec., at Blist’s Hill-all are welcome!!

Sponsored Walk!

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Many thanks to the volunteers who are scaling the heights of the Wrekin over the next few weeks in order to raise money for Prostate Cancer.

After the recent concert inTettenhall, we were short of £150 to reach the total we had decided on seven people kindly donated £5 each to get things moving, and the remainder has to be reached by a sponsored walk up the Wrekin.
Ged, Steve ,Viv and Mike did it last Saturday in scorching heat, Ged and Pete Sidgwick, a lifelong friend and supporter of the choir, did it yesterday, in a rather humid gloom. However, Pete kindly donated £50, so the total stands now at £125. Well done to all concerned, and much encouragement to others who are completing the task in the next week or so.

Onwards!

Concert in Bishops Wood, Staffordshire

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Another spectacular concert at St John the Evangelist Church, Bishops Wood, Staffordshire last Saturday 28th June 2014. It was packed with entertainment and what is just as important, the audience was fantastic! The choir sang sixteen songs from their varied repertoire producing rousing and sensitive music of the nineteenth and twentieth centuries, interspersed with solos, some extremely rhythmical and foot tapping African, New Zealand music plus McCartney, Queen, Andrew Lloyd Webber and more. Four of the pieces they performed to the public for the first time. Anne Clark, the Musical Director accompanied Steve Taylor and Mike Ward who sang duets ‘Take a Message to Mary’ by the Everly Brothers and ‘Old Friends/Bookends’ by Simon and Garfunkel. This was Mike’s first public duet and we hope to hear more from the two of them in the future. Andrew Mann-Ray sang the poignant song of mourning. ‘Empty Chairs at Empty Tables’ from Les Miserables. The choir’s accompanist Jade Harris, gave a splendid performance of Beethoven’s Moonlight Sonata, 3rd Movement (presto agitato) and had a standing ovation.

This concert was the last one for Fred Phillips who after thirty-eight years of service to the choir, is moving to Oswestry. Words of thanks were given to Fred and he said how wonderful it has been to belong and sing with them, adding that having a pint with the lads after practice was a great bonus!

The church gave a very warm reception to the choir and during the interval, produced an array of tasty food and a glass of wine. This certainly was a concert to remember!

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