What better way to dispel those January blues than with an uplifting concert full of beautiful music, inspirational moments and laughter. Suffolk Singers certainly delivered all of these in their annual concert raising funds for Suffolk charity FIND (Families in Need).
Leading from the front as always was Suffolk Singers Music Director, Claire Weston, whose infectious energy and enthusiasm helped to keep the audience enthralled and entertained in equal measure. Claire was ably assisted on the keyboard by accompanist Elizabeth Elliott.
From the very first piece in the programme, the choir showed its versatility. “Breathe Soft, Ye Winds”, a traditional Gleesong from the 18th century by William Paxton, was followed by “Wherever You Are”, written by Paul Mealor and made famous by Gareth Malone and the Military Wives Choir in 2011.
The wide ranging programme continued with two pieces, John Rutter’s “Home is a Special Kind of Feeling” and “Blue Skies” by Irving Berlin, performed by two octets drawn from the choir. The choir came back together to sing “Two for the Price of One”, a combination of two traditional nursery rhymes, “This Old Man” and “Michael Finnegan” and arranged by Andrew Carter into a tricky but fun song. Either side of the interval the choir performed two Suffolk Singers favourites, “The Seal Lullaby” by Eric Whitacre and “Sure on This Shining Night” by Morten Lauridsen.
Suffolk Singers were delighted to be joined at the concert by The West Tones, a group of talented young singers from years 7 & 8 at Woodbridge School where Claire Weston is Head of Singing. The singers beautifully performed three songs to the delight of the audience, “The Rose”, made famous by Bette Midler in the 1979 film of the same name, “You Raise Me Up” and Abba’s “Mamma Mia”.
The final piece of the evening was a version of the gospel song “Down By The Riverside”, arranged by John Rutter, and sung by the choir who were joined by The West Tones for the final chorus.
A wonderful concert that was enjoyed by a packed audience at Woodbridge Community Hall. But the real winners on the evening were FIND, the inspirational charity that does so much to help families in need in Suffolk. Maureen ReynelMBE, founder of FIND, gave a moving address setting out the work that the charity does and how it is working to further develop the services it provides and the facilities at its headquarters in Ipswich. Suffolk Singers are delighted to have collaborated again with FIND and to have raised in the region of £2,000 from the concert to help support the vital work carried out by FIND and its fabulous band of volunteers.
Seasons Greetings from Suffolk Singers!
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|Today our beloved Chairman Alma stepped down from her position after six very fruitful years. We cannot thank Alma enough for everything she has done for the choir. From admin, to weekly rehearsals, to tours, she has guided us through some truly magical moments as well as keeping the choir going through the extremely difficult Covid years. While we are sad to see her go, we are excited to see how Fiona makes the role her own and look forward to the furure
|After a series of concerts across other parts of the County, Suffolk Singers returned to the familiar ground of St Michael’s Church in Framlingham for their autumn concert. The aptly named “Cornucopia” offered an abundance of beautiful music which kept a large audience enthralled. Once again, the variety and range of music showed Suffolk Singers’ versatility across several genres of music, ranging from Weelkes’ 17th century Hosanna to the Son of David and the evocative Orpheus, With His Lute by George Macfarren, to more modern classics including Cole Porter’s Let’s Do It and Gershwin’s I’ve Got Rhythm. The concert also included two pieces sung beautifully by the choir’s Musical Director Claire Weston.
The most evocative moment in the concert was the first performance of O Still Small Voice of Calm composed by long-term friend of Suffolk Singers, Jamie John Hutchings, in memory of Janet Burton, wife of Suffolk Singers’ tenor Tony Burton, who sadly passed away in May 2020. Janet was a loyal supporter of Suffolk Singers over many years and the choir gave a captivating performance to honour her memory.
|On a hot and sultry summer's evening, Suffolk Singers further turned up the heat to deliver another wonderful concert in the beautiful setting of St Mary's Church, Stoke by Nayland, a new venue for Suffolk Singers. An appreciative audience enjoyed a varied programme ranging from Suffolk Singers' favourites James Macmillan's "O Radiant Dawn" and Arvo Pärt's "Morning Star" to "A Nightingale Sang in Barkeley Square" and "Bridge over Troubled Water". The evening was concluded with John Rutter's tongue-twisting arrangement of the old nursery rhyme "Sing a Song of Sixpence".
Suffolk Singers were also pleased to welcome international operatic singer Garry Magee who along with Suffolk Singers' musical director and operatic singer Claire Weston beautifully performed a number of operatic pieces to the delight of the audience. The evening's musical entertainment was expertly accompanied by long-term friend of Suffolk Singers Jamie John Hutchings on the piano.
|Wow what a concert! As the sun set over the beautiful medieval church and landscape, Suffolk Singers had the honour of performer to an intimate audience who were enjoying every second. We truly are lucky to sing in such a beautiful area. We loved sharing our music with every one in attendance and it has made us extremely excited for our upcoming Summer concert. A massive thank you to our soloist Sue, who beat off a cough in order to come and sing with us!
|On Sunday 19th February Suffolk Singers hosted a workshop in the Chapel of Framlingham College.
This workshop focussed on the Hallelujah Chorus with expert tuition from Clare and our close friend John!
It was a major success with over 40 participants and of course lots of cake!
We cannot wait for the next one