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'Come and Sing' with the Oriel Singers

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Author: Thomas Hadfield, Posted: Thursday, 20th December 2018, 09:00

The Oriel Singers performing at Tewkesbury Abbey The Oriel Singers performing at Tewkesbury Abbey

The Oriel Singers are one of Cheltenham’s most popular and successful choirs.

Formed in 1975, the group performs regularly in Gloucestershire and the surrounding areas and was even named the BBC Radio 3 Choir of the Year in 2005.

Mel Boswell has been a member of The Oriels – as they are often known – for around 20 years and is now Chair of the Committee.

“I was living in Cirencester at the time and looking for a local choir to join” said Mel on her first encounter with the group, “A friend of mine was already involved so I came along and never looked back!”

2018 was a good year for the choir, with the highlight for Mel being a chance to perform at Tewkesbury Abbey in a special concert to commemorate the First World War, alongside the St Cecilia Singers, The Cheltenham Youth Choir and the Gloucestershire Symphony Orchestra.

The first concert of 2019 comes in the form of The Oriel’s ‘Come and Sing’ day, which gives people the opportunity to sing alongside the choir.

Mel said: “We’ll be singing Requiem by Victoria, which is a 16th century composition.

“We’ll be practising from 10am until 4pm with our musical director Ben Sawyer, and then holding a free performance at the end of the day.”

Ben Sawyer has been musical director with the group since 2015, and Mel says the chance to work with him draws a lot of attention from local singing enthusiasts.

“This will be our third ‘Come and Sing’ day and we always get positive feedback from everyone involved, both singers and audience members.

“Ben attracts a lot of people to come along because he is great fun to work with and always extremely positive.”

The event will be held at the Holy Apostles Church in Charlton Kings. The performance will begin at 5pm and is free with doors opening at 4:30pm with refreshments available.

Anyone hoping to be involved in the ‘Come and Sing’ day on Saturday 19th January will need to register before the day, through www.orielsingers.org.uk. There is a price of £25 or £12.50 for students to take part and spaces are limited.

Other Images

The Oriel Singers and Musical Director Ben Sawyer

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