Trick or retreat!


On the Friday evening before Halloween a group of 60 or so musical, young (and young of a certain vintage) people set off from the familiar concrete of central London to face the full fear of a weekend in a mansion house converted into holiday apartments deep in the Sussex countryside. That’s right, the Pink Singers went on a weekend away and took over Brantridge Park, a former royal residence for two and a bit days of carousing and actual singing. Wikipedia tells me that Brantridge was one of the lesser royal residences and was the seat of the 1st Earl of Athlone and his wife, Princess Alice of Albany. The weekend was such a success that I think perhaps the house was filled with echoes of its former glory – and we even brought our own Princess Alice.
Continue reading “Trick or retreat!”

You’ve got to work that voice

Putting on a great choral performance is about making sure that the musical instruments we use, our voices, are in tip top shape. All the Pink Singers love singing, but not all of us know how to create that perfect sound without tiring ourselves out at the same time. Enter the gorgeous Fiona Dobie who took us through a vocal workshop two weeks ago. Here two of our tenors, Simon and Chris, talk about what they learned.


“Having had vocal training in the past I was looking forward to the choir’s vocal workshop with Fiona. I was not disappointed: Fiona’s teaching style is wonderfully simple but engaging.
With such a large group to instruct, Fiona concentrated on the foundations for a strong voice. Starting with posture she has us all getting in touch with our pelvic floor and tucking our ‘tails’ in, a most amusing sight in the studio mirrors! Then came simple warm-up exercises that we can use at home before note-bashing, as well as in rehearsal. Next she tackled sustained breath control – particularly relevant this season as the choir is to perform Samuel Barber’s ‘Agnus Dei’. With the basics covered, Fiona applied what we had learned to some of our current repertoire, ironing out some problems straight away. Continue reading “You’ve got to work that voice”