Posts Tagged ‘choir’

Woods Estate Agents, Bradley Stoke, Bristol

‘It’s Our Party!’: Happy 25th birthday to Stokes Singers!

Posted on Saturday 23rd June 2018 at 10:05 pm by SH (Editor)

Photo of Stokes Singers in rehearsal for their 25th anniversary concert.

By Sue Callow, Stokes Singers.

If you lived in the new town of Bradley Stoke back in the early 1990s, you may well remember local musician Nick Breeze putting out a call for residents to join him in forming a choir. The Church of Christ the King was the venue for the first meeting in June 1993 which attracted singers from all around the area. In the following September, weekly rehearsals started in earnest and with a first performance on the horizon, it was time to name the new choir. Taking their name from the local communities of Bradley Stoke, Little Stoke, Stoke Gifford and Stoke Lodge which were home to many of the members, Stokes Singers were ready to entertain!

The choir presented their first Christmas concert on 10th December 1993 and long-standing members recall it being a slightly nerve-wracking occasion with the audience of loyal family and friends numbering only a few more than the singers on the stage! However, encouraged by the enthusiasm of Nick and his wife Maureen, as well as his distinctive arrangements, Stokes Singers were soon performing regularly at community events.

Fast forward 25 years to summer 2018 and Stokes Singers are once more preparing to entertain with a packed programme. Musical directors Sian Walters and Philip Lawrence have created a mix of old favourites and new pieces which reflect not only the traditions built up over the years but also fresh directions for the 30 men and women who make up the choir.

Of course, a celebration is not complete without some special guests, so the Red Tie Choir from Little Stoke Primary School will be coming along to sing their own songs and to join with the adult voices. And to bring a particularly summery feel to the evening, Steel Storm band from Castle School, Thornbury will be playing some sunny tunes. Equally important is an enthusiastic audience, so please come along and share the fun at the final event in our Sing 25 challenge. If you are a former member of the choir we would love to see you again.

More: Anniversary concert on Saturday 7th July »

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Stokes Singers on track for 25th birthday celebrations

Posted on Tuesday 22nd May 2018 at 10:23 pm by SH (Editor)

Photo of Stokes Singers in the café at Bristol Temple Meads Station.

Local community choir Stokes Singers have been out and about as part of our 25th anniversary celebrations, writes chair Anne King.

A first for us this year was a performance at Temple Meads Station as part of Youth Music’s ‘Give a Gig’ fundraiser. Temple Meads was one of ten major railway stations to host a musical event and Stokes Singers joined other choirs from the Bristol area to entertain travellers and raise some vital funds.

Youth Music is a national charity investing in music-making projects for children and young people facing challenging circumstances. They believe everyone should have the chance to make music. Their projects help young people develop musically but they also have personal and social outcomes too. Those facing difficulties – economic problems, lifelong conditions, tough circumstances or behavioural issues – are often the ones who get the most out of music-making. Each year more than 350 Youth Music projects are happening across England. That’s around 75,000 children and young people regularly making music. In our area, Youth Music is supporting projects at Knowle West Media Centre and Redcliffe Children’s Centre and Nursery and we were very pleased to be involved.

It was a very musical day for us as we took the opportunity to sing on the train journey down to Temple Meads, then on Platform 3 and in the Station Café and finally at Bristol Parkway Station. We were able to tick off numbers 18 to 21 in our Sing 25 Challenge and are looking forward to completing the final five singing performances in the spring and summer.

More: Upcoming local events in May, June and July »

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Spring singing for Stokes Singers

Posted on Saturday 10th March 2018 at 9:44 pm by SH (Editor)

Stokes Singers join Crossbow Singers at Frampton Cotterell.

Spring is in the air for Stokes Singers as we look forward to marking the 25th anniversary of our choir later in 2018, writes Sue Callow, publicity officer.

Several new members have joined us and we enjoyed a quiz evening and a visit to Crossbow Singers at Frampton Cotterell to share one of their rehearsals.  Nick Breeze, who founded the choir in 1993, has been back to lead one of our regular Thursday evenings at Coniston Community Centre and we’re working hard with our musical directors Phil and Sian on a selection of songs with a celebratory feel to entertain our audiences.

A first for us this year is a performance at Temple Meads Station on Saturday 24th March as part of Youth Music’s ‘Give a Gig’ fundraiser.  Temple Meads is one of ten major railway stations to host a musical event and Stokes Singers will be one of many local choirs entertaining travellers and raising some vital funds.

Youth Music is a national charity investing in music-making projects for children and young people facing challenging circumstances.  They believe everyone should have the chance to make music.  Their projects help young people develop musically but they also have personal and social outcomes too.  Those facing difficulties – economic problems, lifelong conditions, tough circumstances or behavioural issues – are often the ones who get the most out of music-making.

Each year more than 350 Youth Music projects are happening across England. That’s around 75,000 children and young people regularly making music.  In our area, Youth Music is supporting projects at Knowle West Media Centre and Redcliffe Children’s Centre and Nursery and we’re very pleased to be involved.

If you’d like to try making some music and singing in harmony, why not come along to our weekly rehearsals at Coniston Community Centre, Patchway.  We meet on Thursdays during term-time, from 7.30pm until 9.30pm, and our membership secretary Liz (01454 614148) would be happy to give you more information.  There are no auditions and your first two rehearsals are free of charge whilst you get to know us.

A date for your diary is our own Summer Concert on Saturday 7th July at the Church of Christ the King, Bradley Stoke, which will feature some special guests and possibly a birthday cake!

Photo: Stokes Singers join Crossbow Singers at Frampton Cotterell.

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Local choir ends the year on a high note

Posted on Saturday 6th January 2018 at 9:26 pm by SH (Editor)

Photo of Stokes Singers performing at Poplars Farm Shop.

Last year (2017) ended on a high for Stokes Singers with a trio of events to celebrate the festive season, writes Sue Callow, publicity officer.

At Poplars Farm Shop, the choir sang to entertain shoppers and attracted some young supporters to accompany our songs by playing Jingle bells. Delicious samples of the food and drink sold in the shop went down very well too!

Our Christmas Concert at the Church of Christ the King, Bradley Stoke was a sell-out and our guests, the Barn Ringers from Downend, added a very special feel to the evening with beautiful arrangements of carols and songs. Thanks to the generosity of the audience, £400 was collected for Thornbury based charity Brain Tumour Support and Julie Harvey, who is currently being supported by the organisation, was able to explain how funds are used to help patients and their families.

A return visit to Southmead Hospital for the Christmas Buskathon was our final performance of the year. Singing in the atrium of the Brunel Building is an amazing experience and we were pleased to support the hospital’s Prostate Cancer Appeal whilst entertaining passing staff, patients and visitors.

The choir have completed 13 of the 25 events that celebrate our forthcoming 25th birthday next summer. Our calendar for early 2018 is filling up and already includes an outdoor performance at Temple Meads Station in March. We would love to welcome some new members to share the fun when weekly rehearsals re-start on Thursday 4th January at 7.30pm. We meet at Coniston Community Centre, Patchway and our membership secretary Liz can give you further information on 01454 614148. There are no auditions and the first two rehearsals are free of charge.

More: Photo from the Christmas Concert »

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