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Our annual December concerts in Minchinhampton's Holy Trinity Church began this year with the exuberant Sing a Joyful Song of Christmas, sung to a full house on Friday evening and a well-filled church on Saturday. After getting the party going with Holiday Rock, we were treated to extended solos from Nancy Isaac during excerpts from The Messiah and Erika Jones in Memory. We ended the first half with a revival of our popular comedy number The Making of a Choir, followed by the rousing medley from the show The Music Man.
Stand out numbers from our second half were the heartfelt Fix You, ever-popular O Holy Night, a cheeky Cool Yule from a group of our ladies, the joyously powerful We've Got Good News to Tell and our fun finale, an arrangement of three silly Christmas songs by our accompanist Barrie Cooper. Despite the choir donning bizarre festive headgear for this last set of numbers, our show had already been well and truly stolen from us earlier in the half by the three young ballet dancers - Eleanor, Tallulah and Willum - who danced with such skill and aplomb in Nutcracker Jingles, an unlikely combination of Tchaikovsky's Nutcracker ballet music and Jingle Bells. Isn't there an old adage about the dangers of performing with children?
As always we are delighted to be able to make donations to worthwhile local causes, and at these concerts they were: the Stroud Court, Minchinhampton, Nelson Trust, Stroud Foodbank and our hosts, Holy Trinity Church.
June 2016 began with a pair of wonderful concerts in our home venue of Minchinhampton's Holy Trinity Church and, new to us, the magnificence of Malmesbury Abbey. Coupled with the pleasure of the company of large and enthusiastic audiences, this made for a very special weekend for everyone in the choir. The programme got off to an electrifying start with a medley from The Lion King, which was matched by a big crowd-pleasing finale of wonderful songs from another hugely popular show - Les Miserables.
Between them came our usual eclectic mix of sacred, secular, classical, spiritual and popular numbers, amongst which we were proud to showcase three fine arrangements by our accompanist Barrie Cooper: Psalm 23, Sally Gardens and Autumn Leaves (partly in French!). Another highlight for many was the finale of the first half, Tequila Samba, a very infectious number which had choir and audience alike swaying to the Latin beat!
Several of the songs featured soloists from amongst the choir: Steve Hoskin's extended turn as a waiter during the men's number Goodbye from The White Horse Inn being a particular triumph. Several of the songs also featured smaller groups of singers, with Ain't Misbehaving also proving a real audience favourite.
Over the years we have raised over £230,000 in support of local charities and good causes, and it's important to us that we continue to do so from the proceeds of our concerts. This summer we were delighted to help the Marah Trust and the Nephrotic Syndrome Trust.
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