The performance was given in honour of the Chairman of Hampshire County Council, Councillor Keith Chapman MBE, who is supporting a ‘Year of Music’ for Hampshire’s young people. There were 85 children performing, many of them members of Hampshire County Council’s new singing ensemble, and they were joined by a choir of 40 from the Kingsclere Singers.
Councillor Chapman said: “I thoroughly enjoyed the evening. The standard of the performances was very impressive indeed. It’s been the high point so far of my ‘Year of Music’ - especially seeing the new Show Choir performing for the first time. They sounded marvellous, and it was a great experience for them to perform alongside an experienced choir like the Kingsclere Singers.
“The Show Choir is an exciting new opportunity for young people to explore a style of music that many of them are passionate about. Like all the choirs and ensembles run by our Music Service, it’s a fun environment to really stretch and challenge musical thinking, team-work and performing skills. Music benefits young people in so many ways – and that’s why our Music Service is such a valuable asset to Hampshire’s young people.”
An audience of 150 people enjoyed the concert programme, which also featured soloists including Gina Beck, an ex-Hampshire pupil who is now a West End star, and Suzanne Poole, 15, Head Girl of Romsey School who sang ‘Wishing You Were Here Again’ from Phantom of the Opera. The choir sang a wide range of songs from West End musicals such as Les Miserables, The Lion King, Wicked, Sister Act, We Will Rock You and Jersey Boys.
Lord Lloyd Webber, the composer of some of the world’s best-known musicals, is the Champion of the Hampshire Music Hub. The hub is a collaboration between Hampshire Music Service and a number of music venues, arts organisations and local councils across Hampshire, who aim to support young people’s involvement in music.
Through the Chairman’s ‘Year of Music’, Councillor Chapman and the County Council’s Music Service are supporting schools to add more musical events and activities to their calendars, by providing an award scheme, and also adding more concerts to the programmes of their ensembles countywide.
More members are welcome to join the Show Choir, conducted by vocal specialist Kim Seagrove, who has played a variety of high-profile roles in musical theatre.
Hampshire Music Service also has a wide variety of county choirs on offer to young people. The County Youth Choir, County Chamber Choir and County Training and Junior Choirs all enjoy a full calendar of rehearsals and performances, and are open to applications throughout the academic year.
For more information about the choirs, please visit: www.hants.gov.uk/hms-ensembles
For more information about the Chairman’s Year of Music, please visit www.cyom.hmsensembles.org.uk