Pay what you can - but suggested weekly donation is £5
Our Railway Institute has been the home of various societies for as long as it has had a home, and singing societies have been part of Shildon's culture for at least a century and a half. When the Stockton & Darlington Railway Company built the first purpose built building on Station Street, in 1860, the first society to be set up in that building was the Shildon Choral Society
The Shildon Heritage Alliance CIC started "Shildon Institute Singers" with that long standing tradition in mind - but also becase singing together is an activty that still brings a lot of pleasure and benefits today. We want to invite you to be part of a new community singing group, taking place every Friday at 6pm.
Since we started out we have had two recording sessions and been featured on a CD that you can buy here , as well as making a video of one of our own songs about Shildon.
The Shildon Institute Singers is open to anyone who enjoys singing. Younger people from eleven years old are welcome. If you'd like to take part, all you’ll need will be yourself and your voice, you can print your own lyric sheets to bring along - they are all accessible from the page below - you don’t need any other equipment, and you don’t need to be able to read music. There are no auditions and the main purpose of the group is to have fun, so even if you think you think your voice is less than perfect you are very welcome and Rosie will give you lots of friendly help.
Our enthusiastic and experienced singing coach is Rosie Bradford of Happy in Harmony Music. Rosie took part, alongside a number of Shildon residents, in the community opera “Song of Our Heartland” which was performed and filmed at Locomotion.
If you are considering coming along or would just like to find out a little more about Shildon Institute Singers you can contact Rosie directly using this email address (click me)
This is the perfect opportunity to start each weekend on ‘the right note’, having fun with friends old and new in a relaxed and supportive environment.
Here's where you will find the words to the songs that we'll be singing. The whole group pick a theme and select songs to sing. This season we have chosen songs connected to shows. You can download and print them or access them on a mobile device. Where we can we'll look to provide printed sheets with words.
A Million Dreams - (from The Greatest Showman)
Anything You Can Do I Can Do Better - (from Annie Get Your Gun)
Deadwood Stage - (from Calamity Jane)
Doh A Deer - (from Mary Poppins)
Don't Cry For Me Argentina - (from Evita)
Happy Talk - (from South Pacific)
I Dreamed A Dream - (from Les Miserables)
I'm Gonna Wash That Man Right Out Of My Hair - (from South Pacific)
I Will Follow Him - (from Sister Act)
My Favourite Things - (from Mary Poppins)
Oh What A Beautiful Morning - (from Oklahoma)
Oklahoma - (from Oklahoma)
Once I Had A Secret Love - (from Calamity Jane)
Some Enchanted Evening - (from South Pacific)
Step In Time - (from Mary Poppins)
Summertime - (from Porgy and Bess)
You'll Never Walk Alone - (from Carousel)
You've Got A Friend - (from Beautiful - the Carole King musical)
Q: What will it cost me?
A: We wanted to get a great singing coach in, who knows what they are doing and will help us all to sound great. Rosie is a professional musician who needs to be paid for her time and the energy she puts into the choir. Equally though we don't want anyone to feel excluded through not being able to afford this - we want this group to be there for you. So, we're piloting a 'pay-as-you-can' model so that nobody gets excluded through not being able to afford it - but our 'suggested donation' if you can is £5.
Q: Do I have to be a member of the Institute to come and sing?
A: No - you don't have to, but it would be great if you would consider becoming a member. It only costs £5 per year and becoming a member helps to secure the future of the Railway Institute for the next generation.
Q: I have a disability, can I take part?
A: Yes, the choir is open to everyone. If you have, for example a mobility impairment then most of the time, we will meet in a wheelchair accessible room. You can contact us in advance to advise us of any specific impairment requirements and additional needs and we'll be happy to do our best to help you.
Q: If I come, do I have to come every week?
A: No - again it would be great if you did, but life is full of surprises and twists and turns and we know that not everyone will be available every weekend. The main thing we want is for you to have fun when you do come.
Q: I've never really tried singing like this - what if I'm really bad at it?
A: One of the reasons we chose Rosie to be our coach is that she's someone who can find your voice, and we all have one. We sometimes just need help to find it - and when you do and you're playing your part with all the other voices - then together we'll sound great.
Q: What would we be singing? I'm not really one for fancy opera, or religious hymns?
A: We'd like the group to help choose the songs to sing - we'll do this with a suggestion box and have slips where you can write down your ideas and Rosie can prepare something for future sessions based upon the suggestions. We'll try to keep it so there's something for everyone - and there probably won't be anything that's more complicated than you can try.
Q: Do I need to have had any singing training or teaching first?
A: No - this is a group for everyone, even if you've never sung a single note before - if you want to do it then "the world is your lobster' as someone once mis-said.
Q: Will we be reading sheet music - that looks hard?
A: Nope - no sheet music here. Well, maybe sometimes. As long as you can read, or listen to, the words of the song you'll be just fine.
Q: Do I need any special equipment or clothes?
A: Not at all - you just need yourself and your voice. If you're popping in on your way home from work you can come in your work clothes. If you want to be comfortable wear something comfy. If you want to dress up - you're more than welcome. Anything goes.
Q Can I bring or send my kids?
A Children 11 years old and over are very welcome to take part in this fun and inclusive choir. They must be well behaved and accompanied by an adult, though it's not necessary for the adult to sing if you don't want to.