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Information correct as of August 18, 2021

Strap in guys! As you might imagine there’s a LOT to tell you here about everything to do with Sing United Reunited as we embark on a term like no other. We’ve tried our very best to give you as much to look forward to as possible, taking into account logistics, rehearsal and performance spaces, the results of the poll we did to see how you felt about rehearsing in person and in what numbers, your votes on your favourite songs from the last 18 months and we’ve come up with this! So get yourself a cuppa and start getting excited!

 

Rehearsals
 
OK first up – rehearsals. In person. Real ones. But not quite as you know them. Even if you were one of the people who did not want to return in person yet, please read the following.
 
 
As previously mentioned, the results of our survey to find out who was ready to rehearse in person and in what numbers, showed us that 43% of you were happy to rehearse at full capacity, 43% of you were happy to rehearse in person but at half capacity with shorter rehearsals, and 14% of you weren’t ready to return in person.
 
 
Therefore, our Thursday rehearsals will work like this:
 
 
6.30-7pm
Group A arrival through normal door / crafts / fundraising time
 
7-7.50pm
Group A rehearsal
 
7.50-8pm
Group A leave immediately through fire exit
Group B arrival through normal door / crafts / fundraising time
 
8-8.50pm
Group B rehearsal
 
8.50-9pm
Group B leave through normal door / crafts / fundraising time
 
 
Saturday rehearsals will work like this:
 
9.30-10am
Group A arrival through normal door / crafts / fundraising time
 
10-10.50am
Group A rehearsal
 
10.50-11am
Group A leave immediately through fire exit
Group B arrival through normal door / crafts / fundraising time
 
11-11.50am
Group B rehearsal
 
11.50-12pm
Group B leave through normal door / crafts / fundraising time
 
Questions you might have:
 
Q: Does this mean we have less rehearsal time than normal?
A: I will also be hosting 3 additional Zoom rehearsals for everyone to attend together spread throughout the term, see the dates below. We’d ask that you do everything you can to make all these rehearsals including the Zoom ones. It obviously means that it’s on you guys to do a little extra between rehearsals to to make sure you’re on top of the songs.
 
Q: How will we know which group we are in?
A: We will be sending a link ASAP for you to indicate which group is your preference. Each group will be limited to a capacity of 80 singers maximum. We will do our very best to accommodate your preference, but we hope you understand this will have to be done on a first come first served basis.
 
Q: Do I have to stay in the same group for the whole term?
A: Yes please that would make our life a lot easier, and we will be working to a limited capacity. In emergency circumstances it might be possible to come to the opposite slot one time, but please choose your group carefully.
 
Q: What happens if I don’t want to attend the in person rehearsals?
A: We will also be streaming the live rehearsals into the Current Singers Facebook Group. Please note, sorry but it will not be possible to stream this to any other place than Facebook, so if you are not on Facebook but don’t want to attend, it might be a good idea to either set up a fake account you can use just for this purpose and tell us what it is so we can add you to the group, or get someone else’s login for those times.
 
The dates of the rehearsals are:
 
IN PERSON
Thursdays unless otherwise noted
September 9, 16, 23, 25 (Saturday), 30
October 7, 14, 16 (Saturday), 21, 28
November 4
 
ZOOM – links to follow nearer the time
Mondays 8-9pm on the following dates:
September 13
October 4
November 1
 
 
Performances
 
We’ve thought LONG and hard about what to do about performances. Eventually we concluded that if more than half of you weren’t ready to sing as a group of 150 in rehearsal in September, and I was never going to have 150 of you together in rehearsal, it wouldn’t be right to try and do a full theatre show with 150 singers together in November.
 
Therefore, sadly we won’t be doing the Whitley Bay Playhouse show in November. I’m sure you understand – we are planning to perform there for the next show in March 2022, however.
 
So we were left with trying to find a way to get as many singers involved as possible in putting on some kind of concerts that would work not only logistically but also financially for Sing United, which whilst it’s been massively appreciated how many of you have continued to support us throughout, it’s only fair to say we’ve taken quite a financial hit as a result of the pandemic.
 
Therefore, we are delighted to announce that we will be performing on not one but TWO dates at the Linskill Centre in the Trevelyan Hall! These shows will happen on Friday November 5th and Saturday November 6th, and will provide a great way to get Sing United Performing live again without needing space to get 150 people on stage at the same time.
 
Questions you might have:
 
Q: How many singers will be on stage?
A: A maximum of 80 as you will be performing in your Group A or B that you have rehearsed with.
 
Q: Will we perform all the songs?
A: Yes. The plan is to have you all learn all the songs. Then on the Friday night one group will sing the first half of the show and the other the second half, with the reverse happening on the Saturday. This seemed like the fairest way we could give everyone a chance to sing all the songs, limit the numbers on stage, and make both performances and rehearsals work musically. There will of course be non-venue opportunities to sing the songs as well.
 
Q: Will there be a full band or just piano?
A: TBC at this stage when we see how many singers we have with us.
 
Q: Will we be able to buy tickets direct from the Linskill Centre?
A: No, tickets will all be sold online with info to follow later.
 
 
Non-Venue Extra Performances
 
We have a couple of these already at the planning stage, but for now we can confirm that our postponed sing in aid of the Newcastle United Fans Foodbank from Sunday just gone has now been rescheduled for Friday September 17th, 7.30pm at the foodbank collection point on Strawberry Place opposite the Gallowgate End, Newcastle city centre.
 
 
Songs
 
Thanks for voting in the poll to find out your favourite songs from the last 18 months, it was really interesting to watch the chart take shape! The most popular songs which are the ones we will be singing in the Reunited term are:
 
Truth to Power
Radioactive
Bridge Over Troubled Water
Rise Up
What a Wonderful World
Here Comes The Sun
Amazing Grace
I Can See Clearly Now
Somewhere Over The Rainbow
Peace Medley
Hey Brother
World In Union
 
That’s going to be a hugely uplifting sing, I think, and isn’t that exactly what we all need!
 
 
 
Our New Charity
 
We are delighted to announce that for the Reunited term we will be supporting the Young Musicians Fund here in the north east.
 
Launched in 1998 when Northumbrian pipe player Kathryn Tickell approached the Community Foundation to discuss her concerns that opportunities for children and young people in the region to experience traditional music were diminishing.
 
The Young Musicians Fund has since pulled together a number of smaller funds with similar aims, such as the Abigail and Stephen Crampton Fund, the Lady Betty Martin Fund and others from within the portfolio of the Community Foundation. The aim is to help even more young people across our region to pursue their musical talent, ambition and interests.
 
An advisory committee meets once a year to discuss applications. The committee consists of Kathryn Tickell OBE, John Treherne OBE (Gateshead Schools Music Service), Ray Laidlaw (Lindisfarne), Tamsin Austin (The Sage Gateshead), Veronica Cairns (London School of Music), Hannah Reynolds (Young Musicians Programme at The Sage Gateshead) and Yinka Sobo.
 
Grants of between £250 and £1000 are given to children and young people under the age of 24 from across the North East who are struggling to continue to pay for tuition fees or are wanting to purchase their first instrument. There is however, a focus on young people from Tyne & Wear and Northumberland.
 
 
Bonus singing opportunity
 
As a bonus we are also delighted to announce that we will be taking part in a virtual recording project for World Mental Health Day on October 10. We will be recording a section of a song called Malaika as part an event called World Jenny’s Day which you can find out more information about here: https://www.worldjennysday.com/
 
I know Jenny’s mother, Janetta, and they have a strong family connection to the history of the song. The lyrics are in Swahili (yes, really, don’t worry!) and you can hear an early version of it here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PLePPt6fqF8
 
The song has been covered many times including by Boney M here you can see here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_0l6id3D7dM
 
The lyrics mean simply “I love you my angel”.
 
We will learn the section we need via a combination of a Zoom rehearsal and some time in one of the in person rehearsals too.
 
 
Do you have friends or family who want to join us?
 
The doors to Sing United Reunited are now open! Whether someone has sung with us before and wants to come back or if they have never experienced the excitement of being part of the Green Heart Army, we would really appreciate your support in trying to help us fill the two rehearsal groups as soon as possible – we are strictly limited to a maximum of 80 singers per group.
 
Please feel free to share the above information as appropriate with them and encourage them to come and sing with us by going to this link: https://singunited.co.uk/joinsingunited/

Member

OR Champion

Each term, the sign up process to become a member of Sing United is the same.

Spaces are strictly limited, so please follow the guide below if you want to secure your place.

 

  1. Our membership runs on a monthly subscription basis. In the run up to our main concert, current singers get the opportunity to indicate whether they want to continue their membership for the following term.
  2. Members of the Waiting List then get the opportunity to take any remaining spaces on a first come first served basis. If you are on the Waiting List, you will be sent the information on how to join shortly before.

What if I can’t make all of the rehearsals?

We know that sometimes you would love to join for a whole project but can’t make all of the rehearsals. If that is the case for you, we don’t want you to feel excluded from taking part. After all, this is about uniting! We know that life is busy and maybe you can only come some weeks and not others – no problem. You have 2 options available:

You can still sign up with one of the 2 membership packages and access the exciting extras that are included.
Or you are still welcome to attend rehearsals and pay as you go at a cost of £10 per session. All we ask is that if you want to take part in the concert, you must have attended a minimum of 8 of the 11 rehearsals.

 

What if I can make the rehearsals but not the concert?

We know that for some people, rehearsals are as much fun as the concert.  We also know they don’t want to miss the whole experience just because they have another commitment on concert day. So, if this is you and you want to come to rehearsals knowing you can’t make the concert, don’t worry! You can still join! All we ask is that you make sure your Musical Director knows no later than 4 weeks before the show.

 

I’ve got a friend who would like to come and try out Sing United for a session.

Great! They are welcome to come and join us for a session and see what Sing United is all about, completely free of charge! If this is early in the rehearsal period and they would like to attend future rehearsals, they are very welcome. They will simply pay a cost of £10 per session. See “What if I can’t make all of the rehearsals?” above.

 

What do we wear for our performances?

It’s really important to me that you are comfortable and have some creativity when it comes to what you wear when performing with Sing United. Smart, yes, but also with freedom to have some variety. Therefore, you can wear ANY combination of the Sing United green, black and white. I’m not after a uniform look of black plus the green, I would like white to be incorporated too. Ladies, feel free to wear sleeves or not, skirt or trousers whatever your preference. So for example, you could have a black lower half, a white or black top half, and accessorise with the green. Or you could be all in black, barring white and green accessories. Whatever works for you.

All I ask is that you try to match the Sing United green as closely as possible. To see the hex / RGB / CMYK codes for the green, you can click HERE.

 

What musicians will accompany us when we perform?

Sing United is backed by a band of top class north-east musicians. The instrumental line up will be piano, acoustic guitar, violin, double bass and percussion. The emphasis is on providing a warm, predominantly acoustic backing, allowing the singers to shine!

 

Tell me more about these extras in the bundles!

We want Sing United to be about you! So, we have put together a list of extras that we think people who sing for fun will love! Then to save you money, we’ve bundled them in the different membership packages that are available. Which is your favourite?

 

  • Show Logo Pin Badge – Each show that we work on will have an icon or image that represents the theme of the music. All members will receive one as part of their membership as a little memento. That way you can collect them and look back on your experiences with Sing United.
  • Money off tickets! – Champion package singers get a fantastic 20% OFF discount on ALL Sing United tickets. This is a great way to save money for you and your friends and family.
  • Priority ticket sales period – There will be a 1 week priority ticket sales period, available only to Champion package singers. This gives you a chance to make sure they have their seats before anyone else!
  • Access to Professional Photo Gallery – At every show there will be a professional photographer. They will take photos not only of the full group and the venue, but also of smaller groups and individuals.  Champion singers gain access to the gallery of photos afterwards and have UNLIMITED downloads included with their membership. All singers can also purchase additional  prints for a fantastic visual record of the show.
  • Exclusive Soundcheck Access –  Champion package singers will be able to invite friends and family to attend the soundcheck of the concert. This is a great chance for those with an interest in sound and staging to see behind the scenes. For those that are considering a career in events and want to gain some extra experience, this could be invaluable.
  • Professional Audio Recording Download AND Video (NEW!) – One of the most requested things that people always want to know is what they sounded like! After all, the sound on stage is never the same as the audience hear. So recordings are not only interesting, but great to have as a memento of the experiences you were part of. Sing United concerts are professionally recorded and videoed. These recordings will be made available afterwards for Champion package singers as a one-time download FREE with their membership. Member package singers can purchase these separately in the Shop at a cost of £10 (audio) or £15 (video).
  • Sing United Family Membership Discount – Here at Sing United we are really keen to encourage families to sing together! So we created Sing United Family as an extra singing opportunity either for children to attend on their own, or for families to attend together. If you are a Champion member of the main Sing United, you get a 10% discount on membership of Sing United Family. Another great way to save!
  • Merchandise Discount – All Champion package singers also get to save 20% on ANY Sing United Merchandise purchased in our online shop! Just another reason to be one of our Champion singers!