Interestingness

Carers’ Choir Future Secured By Generous Donations

A fundraising campaign to secure the future of Sing Viva – the two Derbyshire carers’ choirs set up by Sinfonia Viva, the East Midlands’ professional orchestra – has reached its target.

A fantastic response from members of the public has led to a donations total of £1,800 which has been matched by a generous benefactor.

Plans are now being made for a return to the free group sessions in Derby and Chesterfield as well as potential public performances when allowed.

In the meantime, Sing Viva members continue to join virtual singing sessions for two hours a week from home – providing respite from their care responsibilities and an opportunity for much-needed social interaction.

The choir was an online hit recently after releasing a video of an uplifting song – reflecting experiences and feelings during the first lockdown.

‘United in Song (Music Brings Us Joy)’ was written by the choir members and Viva composer James Redwood. They performed and videoed it at home – accompanied by a Viva ensemble.

It has been released online https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YIWEbG68_BU as part of Sinfonia Viva’s fundraising campaign to ensure the future of Sing Viva.

Marianne Barraclough is Sinfonia Viva’s deputy chief executive in charge of programming. She said: “We are extremely grateful to everyone who supported the fundraising appeal and have helped to secure the future of Sing Viva.

“The choirs offer a vital support network – enabling carers to enjoy singing and make friends in a safe space.

“Our members have an array of different caring responsibilities which have been particularly challenging and isolating during the pandemic.

“Coming together every week to create music, chat and laugh together continues to be a real tonic – particularly as we are all struggling to get through this third lockdown.

“We are now putting plans in place for a return to in-person Sing Viva sessions and hopefully a small number of performances later this year.”

A Sing Viva member, who preferred to remain anonymous, said: “This is great news and I am very relieved that the choir can continue. Coming together to sing really cheers me up and helps take my mind off everything – particularly when I am so fearful of bringing the virus back into the house.”

News of the successful fundraising appeal was welcomed by the Orchestra’s patrons – the Kanneh-Mason family who said: “During these challenging times, there is more pressure than ever on carers within our community.

“Taking time out each week to do something that makes us happy is so important for health and wellbeing. As a family that enjoys playing music together, this is something close to our hearts.”

For more information about Sing Viva and Sinfonia Viva wider work please visit www.sinfoniaviva.co.uk