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Welcome Home Phoenixes

Updated: May 5, 2022

Last Tuesday evening, Phoenix Voices hosted a reception, welcoming old and new members into the choir. The upheaval of the last two years has caused a lot of absences from the choir, so it was lovely to see a room full of people. Flutes of Prosecco and Orange Juice were also on offer! (I promptly spilt mine on my music, but don’t tell Gail!)

Our first task was to try and sing ‘Red Lorry, Yellow Lorry’ and ‘Somewhere Over the Rainbow’ with popping candy on our tongues, so it was highly appropriate that Laura was wearing her sparkly red shoes that remind me of Dorothy’s Ruby Slippers. Kris then told us to blow up balloons whilst blowing through a straw. Huge congratulations to everyone who managed to do this! I’ve never been able to blow up a balloon normally, let alone through a straw, but it was great fun trying!

We then focused on the jazzy number ‘The Bare Necessities’, in preparation for our Movie Night concert in July. This personally took me back to my early childhood, watching The Jungle Book at home, so it was a very comforting experience singing it. Kris was his usual cheeky self, and at one point recommended helium to the tenors and basses. He expertly guided us through each part of the song, including the extremely tricky ‘Be-do-bop’ section at the end. (At one point, I believe he said it doesn’t matter what consonant sounds you make, as long as you get the rhythm right.) I did a lot of laughing during the rehearsal.

We were also lucky enough to have jazz musicians, Val on double bass and Pete on percussion, attending the rehearsal, which made singing ‘The Bare Necessities’ even more enjoyable. And, in light of what’s happening in Westminster at the moment, with the scandal of the Downing Street Lockdown Parties, I completely agree with the pun on the musical term

mp mezzo piano (quite quiet): “All MPs should be quite quiet.”

At the end of rehearsal, we were encouraged to head next door, where a feast of canapes and cupcakes was available. Had I expected this banquet, I wouldn’t have had supper before coming to choir. It was an all-round very happy evening, which will hopefully lead to a boost in numbers for Phoenix Voices.

Olivia Feilden.

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