The Choir comprises an enthusiastic bunch of singers and welcomes new members. It also welcomes invitations to sing for charity, weddings, celebrations, memorial services, etc.
The main choir performs at weekends and weekday evenings and the smaller Daytime Choir performs mainly to Care Homes in and around the locality.
We belong to the National Association of Choirs, which is able to offer help and advice on choral matters and keeps us in touch with the choral fraternity in general. We maintain a ‘List of Friends’ to enable our supporters to be kept up to date with future concerts.
The Choir was formed in early 1991 to foster Male Choral singing in the Wantage locality, by performing regularly and often to local charities and organisations, whilst encouraging anyone who’s interested to come along and join in the fun!
Oxford Town Hall, Swindon’s Wyvern Theatre, Cardiff Arms Park, Wells Cathedral, London’s Hyde Park and the Royal Albert Hall are among the prestigious venues enjoyed by the Choir and some choristers can describe their experience of singing at the Atlanta Dome in Georgia, USA.
We’ve been privileged to join in the celebratory concerts of Taunton Deane MVC’s 50th anniversary, Oxford Welsh MVC’s 70th and Bournemouth MVC’s 75th. Weekend visits have been enjoyed to South Wales, as guests of Rhos Cwmtawe MVC and Porthcawl MVC and to the West Country as guests of Saltash Ladies Choir.
Another Choir highlight was the hosting of the Rouss-Land Soglasie MVC from St Petersburg in 1995, when members and friends provided homestay accommodation and the visitors gave an unforgettable concert in Wantage Parish Church, as part of their UK tour.
In 2001 the Choir celebrated its 10th anniversary with a weekend trip to Felixstowe, Suffolk, where 2 concerts raised a substantial sum for Macmillan Nurses and a hospital in India. The following year, a concert in St John the Baptist Church, Grove, helped to raise a large amount in support of cataract surgery for Burmese refugees.
In late 2006, the Choir and Swindon MVC rehearsed jointly for the Festival of Brass and Voices at the Royal Albert Hall. We spent the weekend of the event in London and found ourselves in the same hotel as Saltash Ladies Choir, also participating. From these successful collaborations, we were able to invite Swindon MVC to share the stage with us at our annual concert in 2007, followed by Saltash Ladies in the following year. The latter event was a return invitation, as the Ladies had kindly invited us down to the West Country for a joint concert in July 2007. These friendly partnerships continue: the Choir returned to Saltash for a concert with the Ladies in May 2009 and in the same year rehearsed again with Swindon MVC, for the Festival of Brass & Voices at the RAH, in October. The “brass” element was provided by two of the nation’s top brass bands, Grimethorpe Colliery and Brighouse & Rastrick. The “voices” were provided by Wantage MVC, in the company of 39 other male choirs and 27 female choirs, to form a total of 1500, all performing to a full-capacity audience. The concert, in support of Cancer Research UK, raised a substantial sum for the charity.
To be continued …..