• Sandra Smith

Winter Concerts 2017

With the initial gigs with Show of Hands down, we concentrated on our own set of songs. We had 4 more gigs to do before the end of term - 3 of ours and a tour finale. with Show of Hands.

We were booked to play in Kingskerswell Church, with support from our lovely Chris Hoban, on what must have been the coldest day of the year - absolutely freezing! The church is a lovely place tucked away down winding lanes, with a very clean acoustic. This was our new singers first outing, so it was a special gig for us. Unfortunately, there wasn't a room for us to break off into after warming up, so we crammed 37 singers into the vestry - not the best solution for a choir, but it was fairly jolly in there and it's a good job we like each other!

The choir were superb. Certain songs, especially the ensemble pieces, were the best they have ever sung. It was a complete joy of a gig, for us. We got an encore, too!

Photo by Howard Almond

Photo Helen Duvall

Photo By Helen Duvall

Next gig on the list was back to Exmouth Pavilion for the SOH finale. A packed house of SOH fans, a fabulous atmosphere and a curry after the show laid on for all crew and performers and special guests - makes for a great gig!

Finale at Exmouth By Andrew Lester

Lustleigh Village hall was next - right on Dartmoor. It always feels special coming back to sing on the moor. The organisers were LEAP - lovely people - determined to keep arts in the village after the demise of 'Villages in Action' (an amazing initiative but recently lost arts funding after 20 +years - don't get us started!!!!) LEAP were brilliant and fun to work with! We, however, were being hit by the flu (Aussie and many others!) and were losing singers by the moment! We also had an emergency rescue of 4 singers on the A38 at 6:45pm, when their car broke down and had to get towed back to Exeter (with the driver). We had lost an important singer - so 2 of us were learning her duet part at 7:10pm - others were checking balance with the ensembles! The show must go on! The acoustics were tough - no bounce in the hall. It wasn't our easiest gig, but the audience were fantastic - warm and friendly and it was a fabulous feeling in the hall - despite everything that life threw at us!

Frankie and Alice came in during the afternoon and decorated the stage with greenery, lights, copper and lovely things! The hall looked stunning!

Photos by Bethany Hobbs

A quick check of parts in the green room!

Audience participation - with the words on cue cards!

Female ensemble

Our finale gig of the season was at Exeter Cathedral again - we love singing there! We were booked for the Blue Lights Carol Concert and we were so honoured to be part of this event. Full pipes (as in bagpipes!) and drums marching down the aisle, a wind band and us! It was beautiful! We haven't got any photos from this one (sorry!) but it was an amazing way to finish our season - with 10 singers down with flu and other sickness - we still managed to pull it off!

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