We have a lot to thank Gareth Malone for – he has successfully highlighted the fun and satisfaction there is to be had when singing in a choir. Although primarily an instrumentalist by training, I’ve dabbled in choirs (as well as choral singing) over the years and always enjoyed it. So, it was with some excitement that I accepted my singing teacher’s invitation to join the newly formed York Military Wives Choir as their accompanist.
I was once Director of Music at an independent school in York where many of the students were from forces families. Since then I’ve always felt that forces families are very much under-recognised. They sacrifice many of the norms of family life that the rest of us count dear so that one, two or more of the family can serve abroad in demanding and life-threatening conflicts. And they do so with no complaint. As well as those who serve directly, their families offer us a wonderful example of service, sacrifice and commitment to a cause.
The group of women in this choir bring this life of service to their singing and it enriches the experience greatly. For sure, they worry about pitching, tuning, learning parts (don’t we all?) but there is something of their lives in their singing – there’s no copying of anyone famous going on that I can discern – and quite right too; why bother listening to an anonymous product of a musical production line, when you can enjoy listening to people who understand the realities of life all to well and bring that life experience to the notes on the page. Bravo ladies. Don’t stop.Tim Farnhill lives and breathes music and loves to engage and educate aspiring musician to grow. He provides professional music services from private tuition (flute lessons, piano lessons, keyboard lessons) through to conducting, composing and arranging for choirs and orchestras. To find out more about Tim and the breadth of services he can provide, please visit timfarnhill.com