The Big Christmas Singalong! interview: 'Music allows me to express myself and is a distraction from the negative stuff in my head.'
7 Dec 2017
Hear the uplifting stories of two people helped by the Choir With No Name, who are bringing The Big Christmas Singalong! to Brighton Dome on Fri 15 Dec.
Following a barnstorming performance from their London choirs at Brighton Dome last Christmas, The Choir with No Name - an organisation running choirs for people who’ve experienced homelessness - will be returning to Brighton with their unique and life affirming Big Christmas Singalong!
The Choir with No Name provides welcoming choir communities for those who have been affected by homelessness or are marginalised due to other factors, such as mental health problems or drug and alcohol addiction. Members get a hot, nutritious meal after each weekly rehearsal and have the opportunity to make friends, learn new skills and get themselves back on their feet. Their choirs provide a platform for members to sing their hearts out amongst good friends – a hugely effective way of building confidence and general well-being, enabling members to re-establish their place in the world and move away from homelessness long term.
‘Wednesday [choir rehearsal day] is a day where I’ll wake up and know that whatever happens, it’s choir that night and that’s all that matters. I can look forward to it, leave my troubles at the door, just go and sing. Simple. If my life was a ladder, at the time I joined Choir with No Name I was on the very bottom rung of that ladder. Coming to choir got me out of my hostel and brought me out of my shell. It is a really happy space - I’ve made a lot of life-long friends. Music allows me to express myself and is a distraction from the negative stuff in my head. Coming to choir was the start of me climbing up that ladder and slowly but surely I got to where I am today – a confident, outgoing person.’
At my first rehearsal I sang like nobody was listening, and had a thoroughly good time. Afterwards we always have a cooked meal which for me has sometimes been the difference between going hungry that day or not, but more than that, we bond - like a family where a conventional one doesn’t always exist.
I joined the choir as someone who was trying to change their life. We don’t know what’s around the corner, but with the love, friendship and trust the choir offers, I think the moon and the stars are now somewhere within my reach.