Young singers in Dorset given the chance to find a voice
A YOUTH choir, run along similar lines to the hugely successful Rock Choirs, is looking for talented young singers from across Dorset.
Dorset Youth Voices, which was set up earlier this year by the Dorset Music Service, is open to young singers aged 11 to 18.
Nichola Pendlebury, head of Dorset Music Service, said: "There are no auditions, but we need young people with good voices, who love to sing and would enjoy working towards a big concert each year - and have a lot of fun in the process. Ultimately, we want to create a strong, professional-standard choir that will form the vocal core of our next big concert at the Royal Albert Hall - planned for 2017.
"Dorset has nine well-established county music groups - from the 50-strong County Youth Orchestra, to smaller string and wind ensembles, as well as the junior concert bands and groups whose members work their way up to join the senior orchestras.
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Dorset Youth Voices is aiming to do for vocalists what the orchestras do for instrumentalists.
"We have a good nucleus of talented singers - mainly drawn from the Olympics Choir put together last year in collaboration with Bournemouth Borough Council and the Borough of Poole - but we'd like to boost the numbers."
Dorset Youth Voices is conducted by Jenny Deacon, who runs Rock Choirs for adults in Dorset and Hampshire. She said: "Lots of teenagers (as well as adults) can be shy about sharing their voices in public, creating a safe and inclusive environment in a choir like DYV or Rock Choir, encourages singers to be more confident with the voices they have.
"Singing also increases the body's natural endorphins, which makes us more friendly and happier, so friendships can flourish when singing in a group. I also feel that having a creative outlet can enhance a teenager's positive attitude towards learning and social interaction, as well as encouraging them to love who they are as an individual."
Dorset Youth Voices meets once a month on Sunday afternoons at Bovington Middle School, building up to a final concert weekend; this year, the concert will be at Bryanston School in Blandford.
Nichola said: "A year's membership costs £50 - which is subsidised by the county music service - but we can point parents in the direction of various grant-making bodies and trusts if they need additional help with the fees."
Dorset County Council Cabinet member for education, CouncillorToni Coombs, said: "Dorset Youth Voices provides a wonderful opportunity for young people to get together and sing for fun, and also to work towards a high-profile public performance."
For more information, telephone 01305 225770 or email: firstname.lastname@example.org to register, or complete an online application form at: www.dorsetmusicservice.org.uk