Grand Union Community Choir - Together Through Song
About the Choir
Established in April 2009 and based in Linslade, Leighton Buzzard, Bedfordshire, the Grand Union Community Choir is a non-audition, all embracing choir in which any adult who wants to sing is welcomed and valued. Singers do not have to be able to read music or have any prior musical experience. We work as a supportive team, developing musical skills, whilst having fun as we learn and challenge ourselves.
We sing a mixed repertoire including world music, music theatre, folk, popular and contemporary classical. We enjoy sharing performance platforms with ABC Big Band, Heath Band, Luton Concert Orchestra and Leighton-Linslade Gala Orchestra, raising money for local and national charities, as well as singing on our own. Participation in performances is optional. Our key aims are for people to find their voices, feel good, meet new friends, laugh, learn and sing. Worrying is not allowed!
Being able to sing and perform together allows us to make memories, share our love of singing with others and raise money for charity. This was originally achieved by physical rehearsals and concerts but 2020/21 saw us achieving this in the virtual world too.
Not being able to meet in person between March 2020 and July 2021 was hard but we all used the time positively to learn new technical skills. Singing on-line certainly presented us all with challenges but also new opportunities which benefitted us then and now.
Between Sept 2021 and March 2022 Grand Union Community Choir singers enjoyed a ‘hybrid membership’ allowing them the option to sing in-person or from home whilst we slowly transitioned back to everyone singing together in the room.
The Choir returned to full in-person rehearsals at Gilbert Ingelfield Academy in April 2022. All the rehearsals are recorded allowing members who miss a rehearsal to ‘catch up’.
The choir is directed by Susan Cox an experienced vocal leader, teacher and music director who enjoys working with singers of all ages. Accompaniment is provided by John Wearmouth, a gifted organist, pianist and choir director in his own right.
Everyone has a voice and every voice matters! There is a place for you in the Grand Union Community Choir
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The Benefits of Singing
Being able to perform together allows us to make memories, show our skills, share our love of singing with others and raise money for charity. This was historically achieved by physical concerts but was also achieved virtually in 2020 by those who took part in the 2.6 Challenge ‘Singing as One’ for Parkinson’s UK, our annual Christmas Brass and Voices concert with The Heath Band and our Christmas Carol Marathon. The 2.6 Challenge and the Christmas Carol Marathon brought singers from four different groups together, something which would not have been contemplated or considered before the Covid-19 Pandemic and in December we celebrated a new ‘concert first’ with The Heath Band when we jointly presented our first Online Christmas Concert.
The following benefits have been scientifically proven. Singing…
- Works the lungs, tones up facial muscles, the intercostals and diaphragm.
- Benefits cardio function by improving aerobic capacity
- Lowers blood pressure
- Relaxes overall muscle tension
- Improves posture.
- Improves sleep
- Opens up sinuses and respiratory tubes
- Releases endorphins and oxytocin
- Boosts immune system
- Increases self-esteem and confidence
- Increases feelings of wellbeing
- Increases mental alertness
- Enhances mood
- Reduces, anger, depression, and anxiety
- Reduces stress
- Stimulates creativity
- Alleviates loneliness
- Brings people together and creates a sense of community
- Increases empathy and understanding between cultures