PHOENIX SINGERS NEWSLETTER – JANUARY 2022
A VERY HAPPY AND HEALTHY NEW YEAR TO EVERYONE!
After a very difficult year, when we managed to meet in the open air, in a village hall and then finally back in East Street in September, we are meeting at East Street School on 10th January 2022 at 7:30 p.m. prompt.
We will still keep the hall ventilated and the hand sanitiser etc. will also be available. Masks are not mandatory, and very hard to sing in, but if you feel more comfortable then please do wear one. It is imperative that you take responsibility for ensuring your safety, and follow the advice given.
Musical Director - The music you will need to bring, if you have it, is Jesu Priceless Treasure, May The Road Rise and New Gloria (my 2000 version based on Vivaldi’s original). The choir has been asked to sing at the funeral of Suzanne Edwards on Tuesday 18th January. The choir meant a lot to Suzanne and she was always so supportive. I know that Ed (Suzanne’s husband) would like the choir to be central to the service and hope that as many members as possible will be there to support Ed and sing Jesu Priceless Treasure and May The Road Rise.
Treasurer - As regards our finances - we seem to have weathered the storm over the past 21 months as well as we could have hoped for. Our bank balance at the end of Jan 2020 was £8338, end of Jan 2021 £6451 and is now £4570. This has been helped by numerous members paying full subs in 2020 and many members paying £50 subs during the latter half of 2021.
We will be having a committee meeting on the 18th January 2022 when we will arrange a date for the AGM in late February/early March after which subs will become due for the year 2022/2023. I will be recommending that the annual subs stay at £80.
As expected, due to the poor audience numbers at the evening performance of our Christmas concert, we made a loss of £190.
The Young Phoenix
After a very long lockdown we finally began meeting again outside at East Street school and when that wasn’t possible we were able to use the 4th Leek Scout HQ. Due to Sally’s links with the Scouts they kindly let us use it for free! During the summer break we appointed a new musical director for the choir who was able to give more time than Stuart had been able to in the form of workshops etc. We were sorry to see Stuart go but the children gave him a good send off with a party.
Dan Williams began working with the Young Phoenix towards the end of September. It has been a very busy term since then. We held a workshop during the October half term . Eighteen children attended and from it we got four new members. We also had four more new members from seeing us on Facebook.
We gave our first concert for 4th Leek Scouts at the end of their Christmas Activity Day on 4th December which went really well even though only eight choir members could make it. Then there was the Christmas Concert at St Lukes. The children were absolutely brilliant. We were so proud of them.
We rounded off the term singing carols with Haregate Community Centre. It was a freezing cold night and only a few turned up but we had fun and may have got another new recruit from that event!!
We also put the subs up this term to £2 a week and our finances are already looking up. We are also looking at possible grants and held a coffee morning at Trinity Church. Three more are booked in for next year.
So a successful return to singing together. We have lots of wonderful songs planned for next term and hope to keep a high profile by performing as much as possible, being on social media and running workshops. This way we hope we can increase our numbers even more and go from strength to strength.
Librarian - Please return any borrowed copies of Carols for Choirs (Green bk), Noel and Christmas Carol. The sheet music does not have to be returned but please keep for future use. Remember to sign your copies back in on the record sheets.
IT - We found that selling tickets for the Christmas Concert online via the website worked really well and made life a lot easier. It has been suggested that we move to online sales for all tickets for our next performance. Of course, there will be people for whom going online and/or printing out tickets will not be possible but we can solve that problem by allowing people to show a digital version on a phone or for those who are not comfortable online to give a phone number for them to call and have someone go online for them.
Making Music - If you have yet to explore the Making Music website https://www.makingmusic.org.uk I encourage you to do so. As well as the Events and Resources sections that I monitor for useful items and online presentations, such as one I attended about ventilation and rehearsals:
the News and Campaigns sections are equally informative when considering the impact of the pandemic on mental health, which can be improved through music:
or the effect of local authority cost-cutting when music libraries are the first to go, making it more difficult for orchestras and choirs, like ours, to hire sheet music:
These are only three subjects of interest to me, but there are also links to concerts online too as groups have worked around not being able to perform in person.
Dates for your diary
Monday 10th January Return to rehearsals
Tue 18th January Funeral of Suzanne Edwards
Sat 19th March Proposed “Choir Anniversary Come and Sing”
Sat 4th June Proposed concert for the Jubilee