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Blackburn Cathedral's Singing Outreach Programme

Founded in 2009, SingTogether reaches over 3500 primary school children and over 250 primary school teachers each year. Our annual, seven month outreach programme runs from mid September and culminates in March with a week of fantastic concerts at King George’s Hall, Blackburn. Each school takes part in one of these concerts along with 15/16 other Primary Schools per night, singing specially chosen group songs and performing for bewitched parents and teachers. In 2015/16 we had an audience of around 1000 for each night, on six consecutive days, creating such a fantastic atmosphere within the Hall. It is a project not to be missed!

SingTogether's aim is to bridge the gap seen in many Primary Schools where a lack of confidence, musical knowledge or funding means that children can miss out on experiencing an exciting and enjoyable musical education. Our programme encourages teachers to sing in the classroom, set up choirs and provide them with ideas of how to produce beautiful singing in their own schools.

The project is a wonderful school singing experience for all involved and has been running (and expanding) for the past 11 years. Over 135 schools from across Lancashire are now involved. I have attached a list of currently participating schools so you can see the breadth of the programme.

The project is run by Blackburn Cathedral’s Music Outreach department, and the timetable is as follows:

Mid Sept: Training session for your lead teacher at Blackburn Cathedral 3 hours.
Sept – Oct: 1st workshop visit to your school by one of our singing leaders with accompanying pianist (1 hour long)
Nov: Training session for teacher again at the Cathedral
Nov – Jan: 2nd visit to your school
Jan: Training session at the Cathedral
late Jan: Concert performed by the teachers and other invited guests (this is not compulsory but is a fabulous concert) in the Cathedral
Jan – March: 3rd workshop visit to your school.
March: Concert at King George’s Hall Blackburn. Rehearsal from 2.15 – 4. Concert at 6pm. Ticket prices are kept as low as possible so parents can afford to come and watch.

Our concert is personal, local and cheap for parents to attend. It’s all about the children and their on-going commitment, real value, and the concert is the ‘cup final’.

You receive all the materials you need to teach the children the songs (music, CD, backing tracks etc), full support from us, 9 hours training, 3 workshops in your school with the children, a minimum of 2 concert opportunities. It does take time to learn everything but with steady work it’s easily done. It’s a fabulous enrichment opportunity and suitable for ANY TEACHER REGARDLESS OF MUSICAL ABILITY. The musical is not religious, however is morally ‘right’ and can be used on numerous other occasions.

There are also opportunities to join in with other things we do – Schools’ 9 Lessons and Carols; Schools’ Evensong; Concert at the Tower Ballroom Blackpool; Concerts with Brass Bands/Orchestras and in the Cathedral with other Cathedral choirs etc.

The project costs £395 to take part.
You can use the project to connect with your local schools. Lots of different school groups have established throughout the project and now get together to put on their own joint concert in the summer term. They charge parents to come and make enough money to support their involvement in the sing together project the following year.

If you would like to take part but the only thing stopping you is the financial aspect, please let me know because we are sometimes able to help with costs by looking for bursaries etc. We can also support you putting on a concert in your own school to cover the cost of the project or other schools ask their PTA to help with the cost. Rotary groups, or the like, are also often happy to support

I have attached a card that gives an outline of the project in an easy to read format just in case you need any more information.

If you would like to come to the concert this year to see all the hard work in action, please let me know and I’ll organise a ticket for you. (Concerts are at King George’s Hall in Blackburn from 2 – 12 March 2020, 6pm)

My places are filling fast this year so if you could let me know as soon as possible whether you would like to take part I would be most grateful. You would be joining an established fabulous community! Hope to hear from you soon.

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