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Sing out sisters - Choir of Hope and Military Wives concert

PUBLISHED: 15:30 04 October 2019

The Choir of Hope, Watton.
 Picture:: Sonya Duncan. Copyright: Archant 2019

The Choir of Hope, Watton. Picture:: Sonya Duncan. Copyright: Archant 2019

Archant 2019

Loneliness, isolation and abuse might not sound like something to sing about - but the women of Watton's Choir of Hope are making music to mend people's broken hearts, bodies and dreams.

On October 12 the Choir of Hope will step on stage alongside the Marham Military Wives Choir for a concert called Flying Free.

Proceeds from the evening of uplifting music will go to the Daisy Programme which helps Breckland people who have been affected by domestic abuse, plus the good causes supported by the Marham Military Wives Choir.

The Choir of Hope has no auditions, no pressure to perform and it's free. Daisy Programme project officer Jo, who also runs the choir, said choir members wanted to support people who had experienced domestic abuse and many of them also appreciated the chance to make friends, build confidence and self esteem and help their health and well-being. "From seeing them walking in at the start of choir to them leaving feeling re-energised is absolutely amazing," she said.

Choir of Hope meets every Wednesday morning in Watton and favourites include songs by Abba, These Boots are Made for Walking, and Amazing Grace with a twist. "And we have one in particular which seems to particularly evoke emotions," said Jo. Flying Free, by Don Besig, is a huge favourite with the choir and audiences.

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One of the singers said: "Choir of Hope is the best bit of my week! It has changed my life completely. Because of a personal relationship break up I became very isolated and lonely and needed to join something. I just love choir on a Wednesday morning, sing my heart out, forget all my problems and life stresses. The group of ladies are lovely, supportive, fun and now friends."

Another choir member added: "It lifts my heart and makes all my problems feel less overwhelming and more manageable than before. If I am having a bad day or even week, then I know that I will be able to put that behind me, even if only for a few hours. We have a wide range of ages at choir, from young mums to retired grannies.

"I had never been in a choir before - I didn't even know whether I could sing well enough to be 'worthy' of attending. It turns out that they don't judge you on how well you can sing, we all make mistakes but nobody feels bad about it. Jo is often putting us out of our comfort zone, she seems to know how far she can push without pushing too far. She has a passion for helping women to see that they are good people and how to be happy again."

Another joined when she moved to Norfolk and said: "Joining the choir has really helped with getting to know the area. There is always lots of laughter, Jo is great fun and very patient and the music choices are powerful and empowering."

Tickets are available from Adcocks in Watton and daisyprogramme.org.uk

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