The Big Sing celebrates Olympic values

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Budding singers of any age are being invited to join a mass community choir which will perform in the run up to this year’s Darley Park concert on Saturday June 30 – part of the weekend of entertainment to celebrate the Olympic Torch Relay through the city and county on Friday June 29 and the following morning.

Darley Park is the UK’s largest outdoor free classical concert at Darley Park, featuring Derby-based professional orchestra sinfonia ViVA again this year who are celebrating their 30th anniversary.

The Big Sing choir will entertain the thousands of people who gather in the park in eager anticipation for the 8pm concert and then fireworks and, as choirmaster David Lawrence, explains, will be the perfect highlight to the Olympic celebrations.

David, who is also working with sinfonia ViVA on this summer’s education residency – celebrating the city and county’s industrial and folk music traditions ‘Mills and Chimneys’, explained: “We are looking for people of all ages and all musical abilities to take part in the Big Sing Project.

“It really doesn’t matter if people have never sung before and can’t read music – this is an opportunity to come together, learn some wonderful tunes and then perform in front of thousands of people in the run up to the city’s iconic outdoor concert.

“We are particularly delighted that this is part of the Olympic Torch Relay celebrations in Derby as it highlights the Olympic values that we all cherish – bringing people together from all walks of life to participate and being the best that they can be.

“We all saw what the Army Wives achieved when they came together to form a choir – so who knows what Derby’s Big Sing will lead to!”

Peter Helps, chief executive of sinfonia ViVA, added: “David is a wonderful choral workshop leader and has worked with the orchestra for many years – harnessing young people’s love of music and bringing out the best in them to perform alongside the Orchestra at our education residencies in the city and county.

“Anyone who joins the Big Sing is in for a real treat and this will make for the most magical pre-concert entertainment at Darley Park which is the envy of the whole country.”

Four workshops are planned for the Big Sing Project on Wednesdays 2, 9, 16, 23 May at St Nicholas Church, Allestree, Derby DE22 2PE between 7-30pm – 9-30pm.

There will then be an informal concert on Friday 25 May at 7-30pm (venue to be confirmed) followed by a final rehearsal on Wednesday 27 June at St Nicholas Church, Allestree, and then the finale at Darley Park on Saturday June 30.

Each participant will pay £21 to be involved which is payable at the first workshop. Please email thebigsingthing@gmail.com to register or to request further information.