Don’t forget to look at the Gallery for photos taken at concerts and
other choir events!
ArtsFest Birmingham, 8th September. See event listings.
Christmas Carols at the Barber Institute, 24th November.
Christmas Concert, Cotteridge Church, 16th December.
Music for Youth 2012 Regional Festival, Dudley.
25th Anniversary Concert, Birmingham Town Hall, Sunday 3rd April
Adrian Boult Hall Christmas Concert - POSTPONED (see end of
"Follow the Music", 2nd Edinburgh Festival Fringe tour, August 2010.
Music for Youth, 25th March 2012
MfY (http://www.mfy.org.uk/) is
a national festival that is seeking inspire young people in the UK
to get involved in making music. BYS took part in this year's
regional festival at the Netherton Arts Centre in Dudley, in which
they were the only choir to perform in front of a panel of Music
Mentors. Performing a short programme of 3 songs, the choir
excelled themselves and really showed off their collective talent.
The comments from the Music Mentors were full of praise for the
"smart" choir, applauding the "excellent blend" and
"mature sound" the youngsters produced, whilst revelling in
their "clear diction" and "lush harmonies". Well done
to all those who took part, and it is always great to have such high
praise from an expert audience... even if they're only saying what
we already know!
On the 25th Anniversary concert...
Thank you everyone who helped in any way, big or small, to celebrate
our 25th. We've had so ma
lovely comments after our biggest ever concert on 3rd April 2011.
Here are some of the nicest from friends and members...
Greatly enjoyed it."
L’Estrange (Composer of Zimbe!)
"Congratulations on last night's concert. I really enjoyed the
party atmosphere of Zimbe and hearing your choirs in concert. I
thought the training choir was wonderful. We had fun with
Worldsong, and it was a pleasure to do it in the Town Hall, with
many memories of my childhood."
Mike Brewer, OBE
(Patron and Composer of
Concert! Everyone was in the spirit of it."
"The best £10
worth I’ve spent in a long time!"
and enjoyable, and very colourful."
really enjoyed it."
for all those involved, but it all came together on the night!"
"Congratulations to Anne for pulling it all together so well."
beautiful voice the soloist has
"Anne, you have
genuinely inspired and enthused so many of us and opened up such
wonderful concert opportunities over the years. You have shown
skill and vision in forging ahead with BYS. I know I would not
be the person I am today, with the confidence and experience I
so enjoy, were it not for my time with you and BYS. THANK YOU
AND WELL DONE! "
Joe George on
behalf of the Bournville Graduates
Thank you especially to Joe George for his kind
and thoughtful comment. Joe was an Assistant Director of the
choir for 10 years, and played a huge part in shaping and developing
the choir as it is today.
The following is a review of the concert written
by Stephen Ellis, published in Making Music magazine, Summer
Young Singers' 25th Anniversary Concert
Town Hall, Sunday 3rd April 2011
25 years… a
quarter of a century… a Silver celebration. An incredible
achievement has just been marked in Birmingham by hundreds of
performers old and young: local community choir, Bournville
Young Singers, a held a wonderful, vibrant concert in the city’s
Town Hall last Sunday to commemorate their legacy and future
since being founded by Director of Music Anne Ellis in 1986.
Singer’s motto, “Follow the Music”, is taken from the famous
Pied Piper story, and their pulsating programme reflected the
spirit of the phrase, leaping across countries, continents and
cultures to entertain an enraptured audience, including the Lord
Mayor of Birmingham. BYS were joined by many guests ensembles
including the Phoenix Singers, Bournville Junior School choir,
St. Lawrence Junior School choir, Northfield Manor Primary
School choir, instrumentalists from Camp Hill Grammar School,
the Bournville Graduates and the adorable Bournville Young
Singers’ Training Choir.
The latter two
choirs are sister-groups of the main BYS and their contribution
to the concert was testimony to the far-reaching legacy that BYS
has created in its 25 years. The philosophy of the
non-auditioned community charity choir is that everyone who has
a voice can, and should sing. The members who join the choir
from as young as 5 and then return to sing again when a fully
grown adult have literally been given a voice for life – skills,
confidence and experience that will be with them forever. The
25th Anniversary Concert beautifully depicted this
same vision of Anne Ellis’ when she founded the charity all
those years ago, and the fruits of her labours, and of all those
involved were a joy to behold.
Singers is now firmly established in the cultural scene of
Birmingham, and their Patrons – all of whom were present (and
indeed featured) in the concert – have graciously thrown their
support to the choir, including former Lord Mayor of Birmingham,
Councillor Ian McArdle. The city’s own world-renowned choral
conductor Mike Brewer OBE, lead the massed choirs and
instrumental ensemble in his World Song, and the world
premiere of composer Liz Johnson’s Sun Dances was also
performed. Alexander L’Estrange led his fabulous jazz quintet
on stage as the choirs sang his Zimbe! with all the
energy and verve of Africa, and soprano Rebecca Schneider was a
mellifluous soloist in several pieces. Ex-choir member and BBC
Political Correspondent, Ben Wright, compèred the concert with
consummate charm, serving as another example of someone who,
through Bournville Young Singers, was literally given a voice
So, on the back
of such success, where does Bournville Young Singers go from
here? The legacy of the choir is rich, broad and varied, and so
too is the future. The choir will continue to inspire, educate
and entertain, building relationships, confidence and love of
music through its unique, ongoing work. If 25 years has brought
so much already, then with the continued help and support of
members, ex-members, parents and inspirational musical
leadership, the future is bright indeed.
Assistant Director of Music
Adrian Boult Hall Christmas Concert 2010
NB: Due to adverse weather
conditions, BYS reluctantly CANCELLED
their Christmas Concert in the Adrian Boult Hall on
Saturday 18th December 2010. We
deeply regretted this decision, but felt it was necessary so that
our audiences and young people did not find themselves lost in the
bleak mid winter...
retain your tickets, as the concert has been postponed
and those same tickets will be valid or exchanged for a later
performance. Please revisit this site for future updates.
Review in The Herald of the choir at their
Herald review, by Rob Adams
This mostly teenage choir ranges far and wide
for its repertoire, delivering Native American chants, Nigerian and
Zulu songs, as well as familiar TV themes and more technically
challenging items with, the odd nervous wobble aside, confidence,
enthusiasm and a pleasing sound.
Well aware that, for a visiting English group,
The Eriskay Love Lilt could become The Risky Love Lilt, but they pressed
on and produced a creditable performance.
Their arrangements are very good, some adding witty piano
accompaniments, finger snaps, claps and a chocolo, and while Fringe
veterans may quail at the inclusion of Sting’s Fields of (flippin’)
Gold, it’s charmingly sung.
So, too, the more involved Now Sleeps the Crimson Petal, from
Tennyson’s The Princess, set to music by Alexander L’Estrange, which
highlighted the choir’s depth of technical resources with a light
and thoroughly attractive touch.