Cultural Playing Field

Developing community choirs by Robin Simpson
December 17, 2009, 10:36 pm
Filed under: meetings | Tags: , , ,

On Tuesday I was back in London to meet June Mason at the Department of Communities and Local Government. June, who works in the Cohesion and Faiths Division, had assisted TwentyTwenty Television to identify South Oxhey in Hertfordshire as the location for the latest series of BBC2’s ‘The Choir’. In seeking a suitable estate for Gareth Malone to try to establish a community choir, June had received 200 expressions of interest from communities around the country. She is now keen to see whether it would be possible to encourage the development of a host of new community choirs in areas where they might have a significant positive effect on community cohesion. June had held a meeting for a range of interested organisations last week, which I was unfortunately unable to attend. She had been impressed by the level of support for her idea and the variety of organisations with relevant expertise who were keen to help. We discussed the key attributes of a community choir (as opposed to other kinds of choir) and how best to ensure a community choir becomes sustainable without losing its open access principles. We agreed to meet again in January to look further at how this initiative might be developed.

Robin Simpson.

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