For the benefit of anyone who doesn’t know me, I have the privilege of singing with the Alnwick District Choral Society and I’m a former Duchess High School chorister.
Therefore, it was only right that I went down last night to review the one-off concert of the Dishforth Military Wives Choir at The Alnwick Garden.
Having to spoken to local lass Sam Egdell about her life in the choir, I was emotionally prepared for the evening ahead.
However, I was somewhat apprehensive having watched the Gareth Malone programme on TV when it first aired and knowing that he wasn’t going to be leading the choir.
But I was very, very quickly proved that he wasn’t needed at all and I’m sure he’d agree.
The concert last night was all about the women – and so it should be.
The beauty of being a chorister is knowing that every song is chosen for a reason and, in this case, that really was paramount.
First to speak was Sam, whose family, including her partner, were in the front row to support her.
She told us of her time in the choir, introduced the first few songs and explained why they were singing them.
Each song was poignant, from On My Own to Make You Feel My Love, or When Will I See You Again and particularly Bring Him Home, and that is what made the event so special.
You could sense the wives, girlfriends and mothers in that choir becoming very emotional and the bond with the audience was like no other choir concert I’ve ever been to before.
You felt every word they sang, particularly during a stunning arrangement of Fix You. They sang as one voice and were such an amazing group of performers.
The reason it worked so well is because we all know someone who has a friend or family member in the Forces and as the men and women go off to do their duty around the world, we can take great comfort while the girls are singing.
The proceeds of the event went to ssafa, a charity supporting the Forces and their families to help them stay positive in such a hard time of their lives.
The accompanying video is by Jane Coltman.