Birmingham Clarion Singers
Our choir was formed in 1940 by Colin Bradsworth, a Birmingham GP who had served with the International Brigade and discovered that song could be used as a powerful tool by those engaged in a struggle.
Our membership has included Ian and Lorna Campbell, Dave Swarbrick and Luke Kelly. the great Human Rights campaigner Paul Robeson sang with us several times and was one of our presidents.
We sing regularly at meetings and on national and local demonstrations, performing well-known peace and protest songs, as well as less frequently heard material by contemporary songwriters, including our own members.
Body of Sound
We are an informal and relaxed a cappella choir for women aged 16 years and over. We are based in Sheffield and are led this year by Liz Nicholas and Kate Thomas. We cover different styles of music. No previous musical experience is required and members do not need to be able to read music. We meet once a week to enjoy singing songs that uplift and inspire and perform to support causes or organisations we believe in.
Bradford Voices is a community choir formed in 1996 and now based in Saltaire. Led by Ana Hayrabedian, our energetic and talented Musical Director, we continue to grow in both numbers and experience, since our eclectic range of music appeals to a wide range of people. We maintain a commitment to singing of peace, freedom and common humanity - and to having fun!
Bury Acapeelers (an acapella choir from the birthplace of Robert Peel), was formed by a small group of singers in March 2009, so we are only slightly more than four years old. Despite our extreme youth we hosted last year's festival, and believe a good time was had by all.
The forty strong choir is kept in good voice by our treasured MD, Eleanor Hill. She has guided us for several years and moulded us into the group of happy singers that we are today. We hope that our joy in singing comes over in our performances, justifying our motto; Love Singing-Love Life.
We are a 80-strong community choir formed in 1987 and open without audition to anyone who loves to sing unaccompanied songs in a wide range of styles. Our members have a wide range of occupations and interests but are united by an enthusiasm for and commitment to singing together. Since November 2007 we have been led by Eleanor Mooney and our repertoire encompasses an eclectic mix of folk, pop, gospel, traditional, contemporary, local, African. www.caedmonchoir.org.uk
Calder Valley Voices
We are a community choir of around 50 members. We meet in Hebden Bridge but draw our members from the whole of the Calder Valley and beyond. We aim to learn, practice and perform songs from the worldwide community singing tradition, including songs of peace, freedom, struggle and liberation. We welcome all, regardless of ability and musical experience. Our aim is to join together in the joy of group singing. Our musical director is Carol Donaldson.
Côr Cochion (Cardiff Reds Choir) learnt their songs on picket lines and protests during the Miners' Strike, and the struggles for freedom in South Africa and Latin America enriched their repertoire. Campaigning on the streets of Cardiff, their singing has raised many thousands of pounds for progressive causes.
They have been arrested in Merthyr for singing against Apartheid; in Welshpool for demonstrating against the racist BNP; and in Faslane and Aldermaston, protesting against nuclear weapons. They have witnessed firsthand the violence of occupation in Palestine and Northern Ireland.; and also sing for greater democracy here in Wales.
This year they celebrate 30 years of activism with the message, "Yma o hyd - We are still here".
See ‘ABOUT Côr Gobaith'
Côr y Gors
Côr y Gors is a unique musical ensemble (with lots of voices) who perform and record songs written for them by composer, Nick Jones. They have been ploughing their own harmonic furrow since 2004, in a very special coastal village called Borth in mid Wales.
So what’s the music like? Not an easy one to answer. It is choral because there are 30ish voices singing in harmony, and the roots in Western choral traditions are undeniable. However, go a little deeper, and words like choral and choir only begin to describe the sound and the music which Côr y Gors makes.
Corista are a group of six singers based in Hebden Bridge and Todmorden in West Yorkshire. We practice every week, roaming from one home to the other. We sing a wide range of songs some protest songs and some for fun, always finding something to challenge us. We also specialise in Chartist songs and have been involved in reviving songs from a rare Chartist songbook. The songbook was found in an archive in Todmorden library. We performed three songs from this book for the Radio 4 program, "Sunday" on 24th February, 2013. http://coristachoir.wordpress.com/
East Lancs Clarion Community Choir
The choir is based in Burnley. It is a longstanding participant in the national Street Choir and Raise Your Banners festivals and is active in local and regional events such as the Burnley May Day parade, the Blackstone Edge Gathering and Clarion House meets. It has supported "Stop the Cuts" action days and is a regular contributor to the Wateraid mass sing and the annual "Independence from America" rally at Menwith Hill. The choir sings a range of songs reflecting the struggles and aspirations of working people, from Diggers to the present day. Janet Russell is Musical Director. www.clarion-choir.co.uk
Hullabaloo Community Quire
Conceived by vocal activist Kirsty Martin, Hullabaloo is a south coast tour-de-vox. The quire sports a truly eclectic repertoire; songs to stomp, tingle, swoon, laugh, cry, run, skip and swing from the rooftops to! We are a veritable menagerie of different sizes, shapes, ages, life stories, penchants and passions. We hold a collection of specially penned song cycles to our name and are starting to work up a collaborative portfolio that includes folk-gods Oysterband, Brighton delights The Moulettes and Canadian sensation Po’Girl. We sing because it moves mountains, changes lives, turns the world upside down, gives us our rightful space, and because it is, of course, our birthright. www.hullabaloobrighton.org.uk
We are Ilkley Moornotes, a fun-loving community choir based in Ilkley, West Yorkshire. We take our name from the well-known local moors, and earlier this year appeared on “Ade in Britain” with our own unique interpretation of the famous song ! Established for six years, we have more than 40 members, inspired by our director, singer/songwriter, Beccy Owen. Our repertoire is wide-ranging, uplifting and adventurous, from solemn Russian laments to raucous drinking songs, and from rousing African call and response, to contemporary favourites. Find out more about Ilkley Moornotes on www.moornotes.org.uk
Kadenza’s women’s choir is now in our 9th year, led by Moira Hill. We try to reach out to women of all ages and backgrounds in our membership and for our performances at community events. The choir is based in Horwich near Bolton but our members are both local and from as far afield as North Manchester and Darwen. We believe that singing is our right, is good for us and is a positive force for change, both in our personal lives and in the wider community, and this is reflected in our songs.
Leeds peoples choir
Leeds peoples choir is a collection of wonderful individuals brought together by a shared love of Music. Singing songs of Joy liberation and peace they aim to move hearts and minds with their wonderful harmonies. The choir is led by M.D. Lorraine Cowburn and is "joining forces" with Out in Tune for Street Choir 2013.
Manchester Community Choir
Manchester Community Choir, formed in 1999, exists to bring together and encourage people from all sections of the community to sing together and to share the joy of song. We feel there is nothing like singing for our general wellbeing and for generating that feel-good factor. We perform regularly around the city and beyond under the direction of our brilliant and ever enthusiastic musical director Liz Powers. Our repertoire is extensive and includes songs from around the world, both traditional and modern. MCC is a large choir and is still growing. Everyone is welcome to join us.
Moorvoices (Ryedale Community Choir) was founded three years ago by Rebecca Gross (Whitby Community Choir) as a response to the many singers who lived in the Ryedale area who had expressed a wish to sing in a community choir. Meeting weekly at The Sun Inn in Pickering, we sing a capella songs in all genres from all over the world. This will be our third Street Choir festival, and we are really delighted to be travelling to Wales to sing – in fact some of our members who have never been to the festival before have been persuaded to come along for the first time because they love Aberystwyth so much! Let’s hope the experience convinces them that the National Street Choir Festival is the amazing celebration of song and unity that we all know it to be!
Nottingham Clarion Choir
We have been singing for 25 years (and a few of us have been around for all of these!) but many others have been part of our choir over the years. We have performed all over Britain in solidarity with the Trade Union movement and other organisations engaged in struggle. We've been to the Tolpuddle Festival, Levellers Day in Burford and the Durham Miners Gala. We also go to the biennial Raise Your Banners Festival. We sing for peace and freedom, against racism, for women's rights and about environmental issues. We have, in our time travelled to Cuba and met up with like-minded choirs in Germany, Belgium and Sweden. We are a socialist choir.
Open Voice are a 35 strong choir based in Whalley Range, Manchester who have been singing together for 12 years. Open to all, we sing the usual mix of songs but have a penchant for quirky East European songs. We sing for sheer pleasure but also to support causes, demonstrations and community events. All money from our gigs goes to charities in memory of Duncan Gibbon, particularly a Street Children’s Shelter in San Luis, Argentina. We’ve had an exciting time working with Charlie Dore and an amazing experience singing for ‘Ockham’s Razor’s aerial performance at the Lowry in June. See our Facebook page or carol-donaldson-music.co.uk for more info.
Out Aloud is Sheffield's gay choir, led by Val Regan. We are 6 years old and have about 60 signed up members. Singing together has been a great way for us to build our community and to raise awareness of LGBT lives and issues. In addition to singing, the choir has brought about friendships, romances, babies and a host of outfits many of us never thought we'd be willing to wear! The Street Choirs Festival is one of our favourite events and we're looking forward to being out and proud on the streets of Aberystwyth.
Out In Tune is a Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual & Trans choir for people who work, live or socialise in and around Bradford. The emphasis for the members is to have fun, develop confidence and enjoy singing together. The choir is led by M.D. Lorraine Cowburn and is "joining forces" with Leeds Peoples Choir for Street Choir 2013.
The Pales Peace Choir
From Hope grew Peace:
In 2009 Cor Gobaith (Hope) sang at the Pales in Llandegley, as a benefit concert to raise funds for the Quaker Naga Conciliation peace building work in North East India. They so inspired the audience that two weeks later, Susie Ennals, the director, led a workshop at the Pales. 25 attended and have been meeting for monthly workshops (and shared lunch feasts) ever since......and so the Pales Peace Choir was born. We're a mixed bunch and many travel long distances to sing together at Pales and at events where we can sing songs of peace and justice.
Inspired by our hosts Côr Gobaith when they performed at Raise Your Banners in 2009, I contacted every singer I knew to ask if they would like to meet on a monthly basis and sing songs for peace in Leeds City Centre. As a result around 10 people met more or less once a month from January 2010 to December 2012. We then decided to put the monthly singing on hold for a while and we are meeting more often to rehearse and learn new songs. We have made contact with various peace organisations and hope they will invite us to sing. We will continue to sing in Leeds city centre on a once in a while basis. We have enjoyed being part of Street Choirs Festivals, Raise Your Banners and various Peace Events. We welcome more singers. Contact Pat Brown firstname.lastname@example.org
Protest in Harmony
Protest in Harmony are an Edinburgh based radical singing group who meet one Saturday a month to sing songs about peace, justice, the environment and human rights. We are not affiliated to any political group. All are welcome, there's no need to read music and no singing experience is necessary. Many of us joined the group as an expression of our politics. Visitors are also welcome to join any of our Saturday singing sessions. Come to Scotland and sing along! We believe that song is a powerful and positive force in the world and we love singing together! www.protestinharmony.org.uk
Raised Voices is a London-based political choir of women and men which came into existence in 1986. We sing for peace and justice, with a continually developing repertoire expressing left, environmental, anti-war, internationalist, anti-racist and anti-sexist themes, including songs from other cultures and languages. We sing in support of many causes and also for our own enjoyment, whether on the streets, in demonstrations or at particular events. We enjoy feeling ourselves part of a lively movement of political song in Britain and a wider world, and welcome the chance to sing together at the annual Street Choirs Festival and the biennial Raise Your Banners gathering.
Red and Green
Red and Green, formed in 1998, meet in Kilburn, north London. We believe in the power of song to bring people together and create social change for the better, and we care about - and sing about - work, poverty, social justice, war and environmental issues. Our songs are from varied times and places with some written or arranged by a recent member. We often link up with the other London political choirs for demonstrations, including this year Keep Our NHS Public and Action against Atomic Weapons (Trident), and sometimes with other community choirs. www.redandgreenchoir.org.uk
We are an enthusiastic group of singers drawn together by our love of four-part harmony and our socialist ideals. No auditions necessary! We rehearse weekly at Leicester’s Secular Hall, home of the world’s oldest secular society. We sing throughout the year at local and political events and to raise money for various causes e.g. WaterAid, CND, Leicester City of Sanctuary. We also busk for charity. Our repertoire includes songs of social and political protest and songs of celebration, historical and contemporary, from around the world. Many of our songs are arranged by Jane Bursnall, our musical director. www.redleicesterchoir.com
We are a group of 23 enthusiastic friends, brought together in 2008 from three community choirs led by Hilary Davies for a visit to South Africa, singing and sharing experiences with ‘The Diamond Choir’, a choir of mine workers from the Cullinan Diamond Mine near Pretoria. We enjoyed ourselves so much that on our return ‘Rough Diamonds’ was formed, led by Hilary Davies. Our eclectic repertoire is drawn from countries and cultures across the world but particularly from South Africa. Most of all we sing for the sheer joy of it! www.roughdiamonds.info
Sea Green Singers – Oxford
The Sea Green Singers are a community singing group based in Oxford. The group was formed after a class arranged by the Oxford Workers' Education Association (WEA), and it's been going for about 10 years. We sing at events supporting peace and social justice around Oxfordshire. The group is named after the colour of the ribbons worn by the Levellers, a radical movement in Cromwell's Model Army (listen to the recent Melvin Bragg radio 4 program on BBC iPlayer on the Levellers 'In our time'). The Levellers believed in equality for all, justice, and human rights - things that inspire us, centuries later.
Sheffield Socialist Choir
We sing to change the world. After 25 years we’re still ringing out for justice and freedom, here in the UK’s ‘steel city’. We can raise the roof with a rousing Internationale. And we like to think we can still rock the streets to radical rhythms from across the world. www.socialistchoir.co.uk
We can’t quite remember when Sound Women started, but it was around 1990. Originally a mixed voice evening class, we lost the men, acquired the name, and have been singing music from around the world for more than two decades. Singing together has become a huge part of our social lives, and has fostered many friendships.
We are a group of friends in the Machynlleth area who meet on Tuesday evenings to sing all kinds of a capella songs. We have no one ‘leader’ but different talented people from within the group share the teaching of songs. For over 10 years we have encouraged non-singers to develop their voices and singers to develop their talents in leading a song or two.
We sing mostly for our own enjoyment but we occasionally sing at local happenings such as El Sueño Existe (Machynlleth’s Latin-American festival), fund-raising and community events, and, recently, a wedding party.
So we do sing on days other than Tuesdays(!), and we seem to be fulfilling our constitutional aims, which are ‘to enhance the lives of its members and the local community by learning, sharing and teaching the skills required for (mostly) unaccompanied singing’.
Velvet Fist is an all-women, socialist a capella singing group based in London. We have been singing songs about women’s issues, human rights, peace, equality and other struggles for over 25 years. We sing at gigs for trade unions, human rights, anti-war, women’s and other organisations, as well as the occasional wedding, birthday party and funeral. We have also performed at the National Portrait Gallery, Royal Festival Hall and the Roundhouse in Camden. We are now looking to recruit more members. Contact us at Velvetfist@musician.org.
Whitby Community Choir
About ten years ago in a living room, several friends gathered together for a bit of a sing. They quite liked it, and soon the living room was too small, and the group decided that they might just be a choir. From that moment, Whitby Community Choir was born, and over the years it has grown, in both numbers and character, but a spirit of friendship and love of song have steadfastly remained at the heart of the choir. We have hosted two Street Choir Festivals, performed at numerous events both locally and nationally, and most recently have been proud to have been awarded a grant from the BBC Performing Arts Fund, which has allowed us to explore our identity as a choir, improve our skills and commission a song cycle that we will perform at several venues throughout 2013.
Women of Note
Cambridge’s very own all women a cappella group is an independent, self-governing and very special group of amateur singers. In September 2013 the group celebrate nineteen years of singing together and we’ve loved every minute of it. The singers work with a cappella practitioner Charlie Thomson as well as independently. Specialising in singing unaccompanied, Women of Note’s songs range from pop and jazz standards to music from global traditions and from the UK’s own folk heritage. With an annual concert in early summer and also regular performances at festivals, public functions, private partied and charity events, the singers still find plenty of time to relax together socially either on retreat, on camping expeditions or punting, partying and picnicking.
Wrexham Community Choir – One Voice Singing for All
Cor Cymuned Wrecsam – Un Llais Canu er mwyn Pawb
Founded by @67 Communications and Musical Director, Carol Donaldson in January 2012 - Wrexham Community Choir – One Voice singing for All, is a community choir with over 150 members and meets weekly in Wrexham and is open to everyone, regardless of age, experience or singing ability – there are no auditions, no need to read music - anyone can simply turn up and join in. The choir has performed at many local events including the Llangollen Fringe Festival, Focus Wales, a live broadcast on BBC Wales’ Music Day, performed with Africa Entsha from Soweto, at the Kaya World Music festival and a number of performances at local community and charity events. The choir meets on alternate Tuesdays from 7.30pm – 9.30pm in the Wrexham Methodist Church and the Wrexham Lager Club Everyone is welcome – from seasoned singers to terrified beginners. To join or find out more information contact Wendy Paintsil on 01978 290680 or email email@example.com
We met when we were members of Leeds People’s Choir and enjoy singing a variety of songs. All the arrangements are ours as is some of the material. We sing at “Circle of Friends” in Leeds and at various fundraising concerts. We have enjoyed taking part in Raise Your Banners but the high spot of our year is coming to Street Choirs Festival. Contact Pat Brown firstname.lastname@example.org