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Waldershelf Singers

Singing for the Love of it…

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wschoir

I am General Secretary of the Waldershelf Singers a self funded community mixed voice choir, currently the resident choir at The Venue, Stocksbridge, Nr Sheffield, South Yorkshire UK.

Waldershelf Singers New Website!

Waldershelf Singers has a new website at www.waldershelfsingers.org

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Upcoming Concerts and Sings

Sat 26th September 2015: Penistone Competitive Festival
Evening class is from 7.15pm, come an hear and evening of local choirs. We’ll be performing Vivaldi’s Gloria, and The Circle of Life from the Lion King.

Sat 28th November: Haworth Victorian Market
Spaces still available on the coach for family and friends.

Tuesday 1st December: Christchurch, Stocksbridge – with special guests, the children of St. John’s Deepcar, junior choir.

Sunday 6th December: Stocksbridge Community Carol Service, 1.30pm in St. Matthias Church, Manchester Road, Stocksbridge

Tuesday 8th December: Concert in aid of ‘Wellness of Women’ with special guests *** a very special ladies barbershop octet, members of Sheffield Harmony. Venue still tbc, please check back.

Tuesday 15th December: Wortley Hall, choir and carvery
Booking details here
http://www.wortleyhall.org.uk/christmas/

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We’re also very privileged to be able to sing to the patients and guests of the Stocksbridge Head Injury Unit on Monday 14th December.

Join us at our ‘Come and Sing’ evening

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On Tuesday 6th October we are holding a ‘come and sing’ evening at The Venue, Stocksbridge 7.30pm – 9.30pm. All welcome. Come along and meet our Musical Director Rachel and the team at our fun, informal evening and have a sing with the choir and see what you think! Refreshments will be available. We look forward to seeing you there.

Albert Joins The Choir

Our treasurer and resident poet Chris Herbert performed this poem she wrote at our recent concert at Mapplewell.

If, like Albert you fancy joining us to have a go at singing, see our ‘Join Us’ page for details!

 

Albert Joins The Choir


In a South Yorkshire town known as Stocksbridge
Renowned for its steel works and smoke
Lived our Albert along wi’ ‘is missus
An affable, middle-aged bloke.

They got along well wi’ their neighbours,
Went shopping to t’co-op each week,
There were churches, pubs, fast food outlets
And folk who’d just stop yer an’ speak.

They’d worked reight hard on their décor
T’rooms were cream, pastel, pale blue,
T’ garden were ship-shape an’ weed-less
Now Albert ‘ad nowt else to do.

‘E sat in t’armchair fair maudlin
Changing channels each minute or two,
Caressing ‘is ‘orses ‘ead ‘andle
Reminiscing ‘bout lion at t’zoo.

His missus were getting quite shirty
‘Cos Albert were under ‘er feet
“Tha’ll ‘ave to find summat to do, lad,
That’ll get thee outdoors of a neet.”

She ‘anded ‘im ‘What’s On’ in t’paper…
Bowls, golf, tennis, art, ‘ist’ry an’ t’gym
Computers an’ crafts, scrabble, drama,
There were nowt there that int’rested ‘im.

Then ‘is eyes saw a small ad in t’corner;
‘Wanted – men for a choir, Tuesday neet.’
‘Is wife gave a scream of blind panic
As ‘e kissed ‘er an’ leapt to ‘is feet.

‘E said’ “I’m allus singing in t’shower,
In t’car an’ when mowin’ yon lawn,
I could mek mi name singing solo –
I could be the next Frankie Vaughn!”

‘Is wife ‘ad no such illusions
But wanting a quiet night in
She kissed ‘im an’ flattered ‘is ego
An’ then waved ‘im off wi’ a grin.

‘E walked into t’Venue bit nervous
An’ tentively peered around t’door
To be grabbed in a vice grip by Rachel
An’ half dragged across th‘all floor.

“It’s a man”, thought Rachel, ‘er eyes bright,
“’E’s breathing, ‘e must be alive.
I don’t care if ‘e sings bass or tenor,
I’ll sit ‘im twixt Roger an’ Clive”.

Poor Albert di’n’t know what ‘ad ‘it ‘im
‘E’d only been grabbed once or twice,
Then ‘e thought, ‘Young, strong an’ pretty –
Being grabbed were really quite nice!’

He learned that the chairman were Roger,
The secret’ry, Linda, were jolly,
Then Clive warned, “Beware o’ yon treasurer,
She’s allus after thi lolly!”

T’choir members were chatty an’ ‘elpful,
Welcoming, put ‘im at ease.
Clare’s warm-up were really amusing –
This choir lark would just be a breeze.

‘E were ‘anded some music by Carole
Which ‘e scanned with some trepidation.
Some titles ‘e knew, some ‘e didn’t,
Giving rise to acute consternation.
‘E remembered ‘is music from t’primary
Clef spaces were F, A, C, E
Then ‘e realised ‘e’d be singing from t’bass clef
An’ ‘e di’n’t know which note were a B!

There were black notes an’ white notes an’ squiggles
Albert wondered just what e’d done;
What on earth were dec, cres, an’ coda?
‘E thought singing were meant to be fun!​

He stroked ‘orses ‘ead ‘andle to calm ‘im,
An’ thought back to t’lion in t’zoo;
If I’m brave enough to face t’ruddy lion,
I’m sure I can face this lot too!

Well th’opening song were ‘Love Changes’
By Al’s favourite singer Mike Ball,
‘I know this’, thought our cocky Albert,
‘I’ll show ‘em what’s what after all.’

Well t’first bit were easy – in unison –
But then came t’four part ‘armony,
‘E’d just got the measure of that bit
When the whole blooming thing changed its key!

Poor Albert sat down all despondent
“Tha were good for a first time”, said Dan,
“If yer don’t know t’song, sit an’ listen,
Just join in wi’ t’bits that you can.”

Well t’next song were all sung in Latin,
Wi’ eyes closed, ‘e opened ‘is ears,
‘E ‘ad no idea what t’words meant
But t’sweet music near brought ‘im to tears.

They sang ‘Chattanooga’ an’ ‘Gloria’,
‘The Rhythm of Life’ an’ ‘For Good’,
There were songs ‘bout bridges an’ rainbows,
Albert joined in whenever ‘e could.

At th’end o’ t’neet ‘e were knackered!
‘Is throat were as dry as could be,
‘Is brain felt it ‘ad been through a mangle
But ‘e’d ‘ad such a good time you see.

‘E’d met such a lot of nice people
Though ‘is singing’ skills ‘e’d yet to hone.
‘E’d even won chocolates in t’raffle
Which ‘e’d gi’ to ‘is missus back ‘ome.

Albert trotted back ‘ome all elated,
‘Is spirits just couldn’t get ‘igher
‘E’d really enjoyed t’choral singing
‘E’d be back next week to join t’choir.

So men, tek a leaf from our Albert,
If you’re free Tuesday neets an’ can sing,
Come along an’ be grabbed at by Rachel
Just turn up or give us a ring.

You’ll allus be made very welcome,
You don’t ‘ave to be a musical geek,
Just let your voice out in a sing song
An’ it’s only three quid a week!

As for Albert Ramsbottom, our ‘ero,
Singing solo ‘e still does aspire
But for t’moment ‘e’s quite ‘appy singing
Wi’ t’Waldershelf Singers – our choir.
Christine Herbert – June 2015

Our summer concerts…

We are well in the midst of our summer concert programme. We performed at Mosborough Methodist Church on the 13th June which was a wonderful afternoon, and on the 16th June we performed at Niagara Conference and Leisure Centre alongside the Sheffield Decibelles and we helped to raise £350 in aid of Wellbeing of Women! Join us at our next concert at Green Moor Church for a summer’s evening filled with music, with funds raised going to the Alzheimer’s Society. We will be joined by Deepcar St John’s Junior School Choir, and Daniel Timmins with ‘Weber’s Concertino for Clarinet’. Tickets are £6 and available from Linda Rose on 0114 2885779.

Thankyou to all who helped us to raise over £400 for Parkinson’s UK

Our longstanding choir member Clive (who is celebrating his 40th year in the choir!) presented a cheque to David Rose on behalf of Parkinson’s UK Sheffield branch at our rehearsal last night. We raised over £400 at our Millhouses concert from ticket sales and a raffle on the night. Thank you to all who came and helped to make the night a huge success.

 

Presentation of money raised at our Millhouses concert to Parkinsons UK Sheffield Branch
Presentation of money raised at our Millhouses concert to Parkinsons UK Sheffield Branch

Preparation for our June Concerts

We have a busy June to look forward to with 2 concerts lined up. We have been busy rehearsing our new pieces for this year – Circle of Life, For Good and Rhythm of Life. See our ‘What’s On’ page for details of our concerts.

Busy rehearsing for our June concerts
Busy rehearsing for our June concerts
Busy rehearsing in preparation for our June concerts
Busy rehearsing in preparation for our June concerts
Busy rehearsing for our June concerts
Busy rehearsing for our June concerts
Busy rehearsing for our June concerts
Busy rehearsing for our June concerts
Busy rehearsing for our June concerts
Busy rehearsing for our June concerts

Concert at Hillsborough Trinity Church

On the 21st March we held a concert at Hillsborough Trinity Church with guest choir the Wisewood Singers, and guest flautist Katherine Higgins. We are thrilled to announce that we raised over £300 for St Lukes Hospice, Sheffield! Thank you to everyone that came to see us and took part in the raffle held on the night.

 

Sometimes … it’s difficult to keep up!

It seems to me that there are times when we most need to write about stuff that’s going on, because there is so much going on! In consequence, ironically, we have much less time to do so (not to mention a sufficiently uncluttered brain to make sense of it all!).

Anyway, if you’ll bear with me, I shall bring you up to date with all that has happened at the Waldershelf Singers!

In March this year, our friend, the young and talented musician that was our Musical Director, Adam Barlow, announced that he was going to have to leave the Choir. He had to move to another part of the country for his day job! It is not too far away, but far enough, practically speaking, to prevent him from continuing to act as our MD. So, in light of the fact we had two concerts looming large on the near horizon, we had to move fast.

It is not an easy job these days for choirs to find Musical Directors; good ones are few and far between. This is partly why we took on Adam, two and a half years ago, when he was young and inexperienced. But our faith repaid us, because he more than proved his worth to us, in turning round a choir, whose confidence was, to say the least, a little on the wane. He brought us to where we are today: bigger, better and achieving what our mission statement says above: enjoying singing, for the love of it.

So, could we expect to have another visit from Lady Luck? I think so. In fact we have been blessed.

Our next MD was sitting under our noses. She has been with us for thirteen years, as our pianist; she knows us like the back of her hand and has enough musical nous for all of us. She is of course the lovely and enthusiastic, the very loyal and supportive Mrs Rachel Atkinson. Welcome to the helm, Rachel!

But, amidst these challenging times that beset the Committee of the Waldershelf Singers, our good fortune didn’t stop there. We have also secured the services of a pianist, Claire McAuley, who will also be able to act as Deputy MD, being, as she has been since the beginning of the year, Musical Director of ‘Vivacity‘, another mixed voice choir based in North Sheffield. And she has even more to offer than this, as you will read in a short while.

But there was yet more (good fortune)!

To put the cream on the top of all this good fortune, we also have the services of another talented musician, Daniel Timmins. Daniel is not only able to act as our second pianist, he is in the meantime, singing in the Bass section, very ably conducting us in practice sessions as and when needed, but he also plays the clarinet; and guess what we needed for one of our significant new pieces, ‘When The Saints Go Marching In’ … yes … a clarinet solo / accompanist. Brilliant!

So there we are. Ready to go once again.

I shall be reporting on the two concerts shortly. So, please watch this space, because we are very excited about the musicality and variety that is evolving in our performances, particularly as a result, in no small degree, of incoming musical talent and enthusiasm! We are truly blessed!

John

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