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New stage piano for Buckden Singers community choir

Fund applied for: £1,000

Location: North Yorkshire

2265 votes so far

Project description

We are seeking to raise funds to buy a new stage piano for our village choir, The Buckden Singers - a four-part, non-auditioned community choir based in the tiny Yorkshire Dales village of Buckden, in Upper Wharfedale. Founded in 2007, when a group of a dozen friends formed a singing group, meeting in a villager’s sitting room, the choir has expanded to nearly 50 members, from Buckden and surrounding villages. The choir, which rehearses weekly, ranges in age from 10 to 80. The Singers welcome members from surrounding villages and includes one fifth of the population of Buckden. Buckden Singers featured in the ITV series "The Dales" with Ade Edmondson, and have also featured on BBC 2 and on Radio 3's "Meet my Choir" slot. The choir operates under the auspices of Buckden Village Institute.

When the choir was formed, a local resident funded the purchase of a Korg stage piano, which has served us well for ten years. However after hundreds of rehearsals and more than 80 performances in a range of venues around the Dales and beyond, this piano has become increasingly unreliable and on two occasions has failed during performances. Given its age, we are advised that it is beyond economic repair. Furthermore, while the Korg was ideal for the choir in its early years, as the standard of the choir has improved and the numbers have increased, a richer sound is required, particularly in the higher octaves, where the sound quality of the Korg is very thin. We are therefore seeking funding to replace the piano with a Kawai ES8. The Kawai is recognised as producing some of the best piano sounds in the price range. So far we have raised some £300 and need to raise a further £1000.

In the remote villages of the Yorkshire Dales, people have to make their own entertainment; from humble beginnings, Buckden Singers has enabled more than 75 people – many of whom have had no previous experience of singing – to come together and make music, for their own pleasure, and for the entertainment of local people. The choir has established a regular programme of summer and Christmas concerts which are very popular locally, and in addition the Singers are frequently invited to perform at local arts festivals and other occasions such as the Olympic Torch procession. A highlight was joining a performance of Handel’s Messiah in Paris. It is not just about performance however; the weekly rehearsals are a key part of village life and the social, physical and psychological benefits of regular community singing are well documented. All of this is totally dependent on having a piano which produces a high quality of sound, can be readily transported to concerts and which does not fail during performances. Without a reliable piano, the choir will have to give up performing, and so, the continued existence of the Buckden Singers would be at risk
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