Can’t sing, will sing

Second Tuneless Choir comes to Birmingham.

A Tuneless Choir is being set up in Edgbaston for those who can’t sing in tune but love to do it anyway. Those who join won’t be under any pressure to hit any particular note or improve their singing, so will be able to relax and enjoy themselves no matter how they sound.

The first Tuneless Choir was set up in Nottingham in 2016 by Nadine Cooper, who was told by as school music teach to stop singing as she was spoiling it for everyone else. The Sutton Coldfield Tuneless Choir soon followed, and attracts large numbers at its Tuesday evening sessions.

The Edgbaston choir will be the 19th in the country, and is being set up by Karen Powell who says “I previously worked as an entertainment officer on cruise ships and ran a choir for the passengers. I got chatting to a customer at work who turned out to be a very keen member of Sutton Coldfield Tuneless Choir and told me all about it. I went along twice and both times I loved it – there was such a welcoming atmosphere – so I decided I must set one up locally. By day I’ll be doing the day job in soft furnishings for a well-known department store, and on Wednesday evenings I’ll be reliving my life on the high seas!

“Singing in a group creates so much joy. It brings people together and unites people. It’s time to bring singing back and make it fun for all regardless of talent, like in past decades when families would have gathered around the piano together and there would have been raucous singing in the pub. It doesn’t matter whether a person can belt out a tune like Alfie Bow or hasn’t sung since they were put at the back of class at school and told to sing quietly.

“I love the idea of creating an opportunity for people to come together to sing, and have a cup of tea and a natter. I imagine there’ll be the odd bit of boogying thrown in too.”

Tuneless Choirs tackle (and often bring to the ground) popular songs from across the decades, everything from old crooners to Adele, with classics from the likes of Abba, Queen and The Beatles in between. Karen is making a note every time she hears a song she thinks might be suitable, and has work colleagues making suggestions. She also plans to do theme nights, with a pub night knees-up high up her list of ideas, along with country & western, and a love-themed night for Valentines night which falls at the end of the first term.

The choir will meet at St Germain’s Church Hall, 180 Portland Road, Edgbaston B16 9TD.

On launch night, Wednesday 17th January, doors will open at 7pm with singing starting at 7.30pm. Registration with the choir and this first session costs £10, with a complimentary glass of fizz, and cake at the break. Anyone wishing to attend the launch is asked to book a ticket from the Tuneless Choir website to ensure they are catered for: www.tunelesschoir.com/edgbaston

Ongoing choir sessions will be held weekly during term times, from 7.30pm until 9.00pm. The ‘pay as you go’ price will be £7 per session, though it will be possible to book terms in advance at the equivalent of £5 per session.

If you have any questions about the choir, Karen can be contacted on edgbaston@tunelesschoir.com or on 07854 793596 – please leave a message if she is busy selling curtains!