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Manchester Museum seeks enthusiastic singers for a weekend of Wonder

12 Sep 2014

Come along to a free introductory singing workshop on Saturday, 27 September (1.30-4.30pm) or Sunday, 28 September (1.30-4.30pm) - no need to book

Manchester Museum

Manchester Museum is looking for keen singers to join a special volunteer choir which will participate in Wonderstruck, an exciting weekend of live music and performance taking place over the weekend of Saturday, 15 and Sunday, 16 November 2014.

Wonderstruck has been commissioned by Manchester Museum and People United, a pioneering charity which develops projects around the role the arts can play in developing a kinder society. The project will be created by writer, director and performer Daniel Bye, director Sarah Punshon and writer and musician Boff Whalley, of Chumbawamba fame. Wonderstruck will feature original songs and performance inspired by the Museum’s collections, to create a weekend of surprises and wonder for museum visitors.

The Museum is putting together a specialchoir of volunteer singers to take part, alongside existing Manchester based choirs and drama groups. These singers will perform music written specially for them, in the beautiful museum spaces, alongside existing choirs such as Golden Voices, the all-female She, the Manchester schools Network Choir, andthe Ordsall A Capellas.

On Saturday, 27 and Sunday, 28 September, 1.30-4.30pm, the Museum is hosting two workshops, where volunteer singers can come along, meet the Wonder team, try out a song, find out more about the project, and decide if they want to take part. Both events are the same and each last for the full three hours, so people can choose which day to come along.

The Wonderstruck choir welcomes all keen singers, male or female, old or young. Singers don’t need to be able to read music, or be excellent singers; they just need to be happy to sing a capella, available for some evening and weekend rehearsals in November in advance of the Wonderstruck weekend, and be open to having some fun and trying something different!

Nick Merriman, Director of Manchester Museum said, ”We are delighted to be working with People United on the Wonder commission. Visitors often tell us that Manchester Museum is a space where they encounter the unexpected. The opportunity to work with Dan, Sarah and Boff enables us to explore this in new ambitious ways, drawing on our extraordinary collections and rooted in our vision to work towards a more sustainable world.”

Tina Corri, Co-Director of People United said, “Our Artist Commissions programme is a hugely important part of our work, helping us to illuminate different themes through the arts. Manchester Museum is a fantastic commission partner for us – not just the amazing collection - but the fact that they are always looking to try new things. We feel extremely fortunate to be working with the hugely talented Dan, Sarah and Boff. We know that they will work with people in awe-inspiring ways, reflecting our belief that the arts can be a powerful catalyst for bringing different kinds of people together”.

Boff Whalley, composer on the project, said, “We know there are a lot of talented amateur singers in Manchester – we're really looking forward to meeting them.”

Wonderstruck artist Daniel Bye said “People United and Manchester Museum are both wonderful organisations and I’m totally delighted to be working with them on this project. I hope what we create will reflect and magnify the museum’s awesome collection, and bring together some of Manchester’s great communities in speech and song.”