Posts Tagged ‘choir’

Tuning up for the festive season!

Posted on Wednesday 21st November 2018 at 10:14 pm by SH (Editor)

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

By Sue Callow, Stokes Singers

We may not have started Christmas shopping just yet but Stokes Singers have a few new festive tunes in our repertoire already!

Our autumn rehearsals at Coniston Community Centre are going well and we’ve been pleased to welcome new singers who’ve quickly settled in to our 30-strong mixed choir. Our two musical directors, Phil Lawrence and Sian Walters, have chosen a great mix of traditional and modern music in preparation for our Christmas concert.

On Saturday 8th December, we’ll return to the Church of Christ the King in Bradley Stoke for our annual celebration of all things festive. We are especially pleased to confirm that our guests will be Oldland Brass who will accompany the traditional carols as well as playing their own choice of music. Founded in 2002, the ensemble is led by Bob Lavis and comprises cornets, flugelhorn, tenor horn, euphonium and bass. Such an unconventional line up demands some skilful arrangements from Bob resulting in a repertoire that covers everything from ‘Mozart to Modern’ and we look forward to welcoming the players.

Tickets will be on sale from mid-November from choir members or from Liz on 01454 614148. Our summer concert at the same venue was a sell out so please get your ticket in advance to be sure of your seat. For further information visit our website where we will soon be announcing the nominated charity for the evening.

We look forward to seeing  you soon!

This article originally appeared in the November 2018 issue of the Bradley Stoke Journal magazine (on page 39). The magazine is delivered FREE, EVERY MONTH (except August), to ALL 8,700 homes in Bradley Stoke. Phone 01454 300 400 to enquire about advertising or leaflet insertion.

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Stokes Singers: Refreshed and ready to go!

Posted on Monday 17th September 2018 at 6:59 pm by SH (Editor)

Photo of performers at the end of the Stokes Singers summer concert.

After a memorable end to the choir’s Sing 25 Challenge, Stokes Singers are refreshed and ready to go at the start of our autumn term writes publicity officer Sue Callow.

Our summer concert in July marked the 25th birthday of the choir and was well received by a full house at the Church of Christ the King in Bradley Stoke. Amazing guests Steel Storm from Castle School, Thornbury and the Red Tie Choir from Little Stoke Primary School brought a fantastic energy to the evening. Over £500 was raised for the nominated children’s charity CLIC Sargent and with 70-plus performers joining forces it was certainly an evening to remember.

Although it’s a little early to start Christmas festivities, Stokes Singers’ diary is rapidly filling with invitations to perform in November and December so weekly rehearsals re-start on 6th September. If you’d like to sing with us, this is an ideal time to come along to a Thursday evening rehearsal from 7.30pm until 9.30pm at Coniston Community Centre in Patchway. New members can enjoy their first two rehearsals free of charge while they get to know us and our music. We’re a friendly group, rehearsals with our two Musical Directors Phil Lawrence and Sian Walters are fun and productive and there are no auditions.

Currently we have vacancies in all sections of our 30 strong mixed harmony choir and ladies and men with lower voices would be especially welcome. Take a look at our website and message us via the contact page or call our membership secretary Liz on 01454 614148. It’s always worth letting us know you’re coming so we can meet you at the door and show you around the building.

If you prefer to listen rather than sing, pop a note on your calendar for our Christmas concert on Saturday 8th December at the Church of Christ the King. More information will be available on the website soon when we confirm some rather special Christmas guests.

Either way, we look forward to seeing you soon.

Photo: Stokes Singers summer concert. [Hi-res version on Facebook]

This article originally appeared in the September 2018 issue of the Bradley Stoke Journal news magazine (on page 31). The magazine is delivered FREE, EVERY MONTH, to ALL 8,700 homes in Bradley Stoke. Phone 01454 300 400 to enquire about advertising or leaflet insertion.

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‘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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