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Choir News

July Newsletter

Dear Friends, We may have stopped rehearsals for the summer holidays, but nobody is resting yet. We are about to release our next single and our two sixth form boys, Charlie Morgan and Harry Wood, are hard at work on the World War II Medley, to be released at a later date! We thank all our wonderful visitors from the choirs across Jersey, and hope sincerely that you are able to return to singing together in the Autumn in some way. We hope to push on towards our fundraising goal with new vigour as we are close to two thirds of the way there now. We are keen too, to hear from our friends and members how we might be able to contribute to the choral and musical life of Jersey with fundraising efforts and singing activities from the Autumn. We are closely monitoring the situation with choirs and Covid, and are engaging with the One Voice Campaign run by our colleague Sam Evans. We are keeping abreast of current research and how that might inform us about a safe return to singing and will lay out some of the concerns below 

The Road Home Release! 

The Road Home will be released on Tuesday, July 28th 2020 and we will send out the YouTube link etc then. It is a really beautiful track gorgeously produced by Nick Girard and Clare Bowskill. We were thrilled to invite members of the various choirs of Jersey to join us in this project and make it about coming together and working together. The video explores our relationships with ‘home’. We have spent a lot of time at home in recent months, but home is more than a location. It is our people, our community, what we do together. As we emerge from the restrictions of lockdown, we start to reconvene on sports fields, in pubs and restaurants, at book clubs, at churches. We are returning to our activities with caution, and singers are looking forwards with real hope for a return to singing together, even though they know and understand that large groups may not be permitted to sing together for a considerable time yet. We all await the outcomes of the various studies into singing and hope that safe ways to join together can be found. 

Looking Ahead : Covid-19

Visits from John Rutter & Roderick Williams Guidelines in Jersey continue to strongly discourage all singing for choirs, whether inside or outside, though we hope for better news when we move to Level 1 of the lockdown. There is a strong concern that singing is not a safe activity (based on two choirs through which an alarming spread of the virus was documented). Concerns are around droplet/aerosol transmission and also the depth of inhalation by groups of singers. The question of droplet and aerosol transmission is being investigated by Declan Costello et al in a study in the UK, and it is thought that the study will clarify whether singing truly can be any more dangerous than, say, loud talking or shouting. The study will not address the question of size of building /ventilation or of the question of inhalation, but we hope that it will go some way to clarify things scientifically for those making our guidelines so that they can be led by science rather than conjecture. We don’t know what the future will bring, but we are so heartened that SO many of you enjoy virtual singing – we will let you all know of any future plans in the Autumn.

World War II Medley

Charlie Morgan and Harry Wood are hard at work producing a video for our recording of the World War II medley. We look forward to seeing what they’ve come up with! 

Sponsorship and fundraising 

We are very grateful indeed to De Carteret Wealth who sponsored to get us over the line with Project 1. We are always looking for additional sponsorship; please don’t hesitate to get in touch if you would like to help. We have raised over half of our target with our Just Giving page.

Information and Joining Us 

If you are interested in joining us please contact us at info@aureolechoir.co.uk There are no rehearsals through the summer, but we will be very happy to keep in touch! 

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Choir News

Visits from John Rutter & Roderick Williams

We were privileged to receive a visit and some fantastic words of encouragement from both baritone Roderick Williams OBE and from John Rutter himself at our last rehearsal before the summer break. We know, of course, that singing is hugely beneficial for people’s mental health, and music is a fundamental part of all our lives. 

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Choir News

June Newsletter

Dear Friends,

Another scorcher of a week coming our way! With lockdown easing, and life heading to a new ‘normal’, there are some green shoots appearing in all sorts of areas of life… we are starting to look ahead with optimism as businesses and leisure activities begin to return to life.

There is, of course, a sharp focus by governments and scientists on the transmission of the virus, and fear still lurks of a dreaded second wave. However, on the whole, a pragmatic approach with a careful balance of risk management seems to be the way forward in most areas of life.

Rest assured, there is a concerted effort going on behind the scenes here in Jersey to try and bring about a coherent discussion with government, involving many of our musical and choral leaders, making sure that as the science and data begin to catch up with Covid-19, we can respond quickly and get people singing together safely as soon as possible. We think that good news will be out very soon on this. It has been wonderful to see a few choirs in the U.K. singing together now, albeit with some serious distancing going on, and we hope that if we remain with very few cases on the island, our choirs also may be able to meet, even if in very small groups/sectional rehearsals and with stringent safety precautions in place. 

 INFORMATION AND JOINING US 

For more information, please contact us at info@aureolechoir.co.uk To join any of our rehearsals, these take place on Thursday evenings at 7 pm, until 9th July, when we stop for the summer break. 

Jersey Sandman artwork
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Choir News

The Road Home

The Road Home by Stephen Paulus has attracted a fantastic number of guests to our rehearsals. We have decided that Aureole will take a big step back on this one, becoming the facilitator and coordinator for a project involving as many singers from Jersey’s choirs as possible. The Aureole Choir was set up as a lockdown choir to keep people engaged in singing rather than a new choir competing for Jersey’s pool of singers. We want to promote all the other choirs and choral singing in general. We hope that this will be our final leg of the lockdown project, and plan to focus on smaller-scale charitable project-based work in the Autumn. We have extended the deadline for this project to the end of June to accommodate all our new guests and give them time to learn it, so there’s still time! The video filming began in earnest yesterday as we took our young soloist Jack out to Seymour Tower with the wonderful photographer and drone man Mike Ward. Some spectacular, breathtaking footage was captured. It was a bit breezy, and the drone did finish its hard work by a small crash into the tower, (oops!) but Mike remained stoic and carried on smiling. Our members are filming themselves singing the music in various places around the island that they associate with home. That will be in the sea for me.

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Choir News

Dame Vera Lynn

We bid a fond farewell to singing legend Dame Vera Lynn this week. We were able to meet together and pay tribute to her on the day of her death, singing our World War 2 Medley at our evening rehearsal. Sixth formers Charlie Morgan and Harry Wood will undertake all the sound and video edi?ng for this project and we can’t wait to see what they come up with! A few of you have expressed interest in submitting a late recording, and so we will give another week for any final recordings to come in! Email us info@aureolechoir.co.uk if you want to know more!

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Choir News

Black Lives Matter

We met on Ouaisne beach on a windy 5th June as one of the first choirs in Europe to come together and sing and were joined by the Jersey Sandman to make this a protest on the tragic murder of George Floyd in the U.S. It was bittersweet. The protest was real, and the sentiment was strong, but we couldn’t help feeling incredibly positive and uplifted at the same time, as we met, many of us for the very first time. We weren’t allowed to hug, which was definitely the hardest part (That and a bitter wind!) Our thanks to St Brelade’s honorary police for joining us, keeping us in line, and making this an extra special event.

Jersey Sandman artwork
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Choir News

Aureole Choir met for the first time in person to support the Black Lives Matter movement.

As one of the first choirs in Europe to meet in person and sing together since the coronavirus outbreak, Aureole Choir members stood together on Ouaisne Beach to sing their latest track, Something Inside (So Strong) written by Labi Siffre as a protest against the South African Apartheid regime. 

Jersey Sandman artwork

 Standing around the amazing artwork created by The Jersey Sandman, the choir made a strong statement for Jersey as we stand together with all of those protesting against the shocking death of George Floyd.

Check out the coverage on ITV News here

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Choir News

Sponsorship and fundraising

We are very grateful indeed to De Carteret Wealth who have sponsored us to help get us over the line on Project 1. We are always looking for added sponsorship, and here are some of the things we want it for! We need to purchase a suitable electric piano and stand that we can take out and about to events, care homes etc, as well as some publicity materials such as a couple of feather flags and banners.