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Carers’ Choir Future Secured By Generous Donations

Carers’ Choir Future Secured By Generous Donations


A fundraising campaign to secure the future of Sing Viva – the two Derbyshire carers’ choirs set up by Sinfonia Viva, the East Midlands’ professional orchestra – has reached its target.

A fantastic response from members of the public has led to a donations total of £1,800 which has been matched by a generous benefactor.

Plans are now being made for a return to the free group sessions in Derby and Chesterfield as well as potential public performances when allowed.

In the meantime, Sing Viva members continue to join virtual singing sessions for two hours a week from home – providing respite from their care responsibilities and an opportunity for much-needed social interaction.

The choir was an online hit recently after releasing a video of an uplifting song – reflecting experiences and feelings during the first lockdown.

‘United in Song (Music Brings Us Joy)’ was written by the choir members and Viva composer James Redwood. They performed and videoed it at home - accompanied by a Viva ensemble. 

It has been released online  HYPERLINK "" as part of Sinfonia Viva’s fundraising campaign to ensure the future of Sing Viva.

Marianne Barraclough is Sinfonia Viva’s deputy chief executive in charge of programming. She said: “We are extremely grateful to everyone who supported the fundraising appeal and have helped to secure the future of Sing Viva.

“The choirs offer a vital support network – enabling carers to enjoy singing and make friends in a safe space.

“Our members have an array of different caring responsibilities which have been particularly challenging and isolating during the pandemic.

“Coming together every week to create music, chat and laugh together continues to be a real tonic – particularly as we are all struggling to get through this third lockdown.

“We are now putting plans in place for a return to in-person Sing Viva sessions and hopefully a small number of performances later this year.” 

A Sing Viva member, who preferred to remain anonymous, said: “This is great news and I am very relieved that the choir can continue. Coming together to sing really cheers me up and helps take my mind off everything – particularly when I am so fearful of bringing the virus back into the house.”

News of the successful fundraising appeal was welcomed by the Orchestra’s patrons – the Kanneh-Mason family who said: “During these challenging times, there is more pressure than ever on carers within our community.  

“Taking time out each week to do something that makes us happy is so important for health and wellbeing. As a family that enjoys playing music together, this is something close to our hearts.”

For more information about Sing Viva and Sinfonia Viva wider work please visit  HYPERLINK "" 
Media enquiries:
Sarah Jenkin-Jones, JJPR, Tel: 01332 515102; 07951 945 665;  HYPERLINK ""

Note to Editors

Caring Facts
Caring for a loved one with long term disability, illness, or dependency issues can be extremely difficult. Isolation and loneliness are common for carers, who often find themselves caring for over 50 hours a week, in a unpaid role behind closed doors.

Research by Carers UK has found that 40% of unpaid carers have not had a break in over a year, whilst 25% have not received a single day away from caring in over 5 years. COVID-19 and lockdown has only added to the pressures.

The study also went on to find that carers who have not had a break in a year or more reported a deterioration in their health, both mentally (75%) and physically (65%). Despite this lack of personal time, 87% of carers still struggle to find time away from their care duties. Almost a third (29%) of carers are worried that practical support for them might be reduced in the future.

Founded in 1982, Sinfonia Viva is a charity and orchestra that helps those most in need and performs a wide range of orchestral music written by a variety of people. These include works by classical composers, young people, the elderly and music by today’s composers. 

Sinfonia Viva shines a light on talent by writing music with communities across the country and performing alongside them onstage. The orchestra want as many people as possible to have access to their music and bring their music to the widest possible audience by performing across the UK, broadcasting on radio such as Classic FM, BBC Radio 3 and digital stations and making their performances accessible through BSL interpretation, hearing loops and sensory equipment, as well as collaborating with others to create multimedia performances. 

Sinfonia Viva is committed to producing high quality performances and participatory work during the current pandemic and has already produced a series or inspiring creative projects online for children with learning difficulties and disabilities, as well as a range of online performances including intimate performances from musicians and this year’s Darley Park Concert “at Home” virtual event.  

The orchestra has featured on albums and tracks by Bobby Womack, Damon Albarn, Mos Def and the Gorillaz’ and has been nominated for a Grammy award for their work on contemporary pop music. Other awards include The Royal Philharmonic Society Music Awards in 2018 and several awards at the Family Arts Awards in London. Sinfonia Viva continues to work with BBC Children In Need, a partnership that is currently in its sixth year.

Sinfonia Viva is supported using public funding by the National Lottery through Arts Council England. For more information about all of Viva’s other performances, visit the website,  HYPERLINK "" 

Arts Council England is the national development agency for creativity and culture. We have set out our strategic vision in Let’s Create that by 2030 we want England to be a country in which the creativity of each of us is valued and given the chance to flourish and where everyone of us has access to a remarkable range of high quality cultural experiences. We invest public money from Government and The National Lottery to help support the sector and to deliver this vision.
Following the Covid-19 crisis, the Arts Council developed a £160 million Emergency Response Package, with nearly 90% coming from the National Lottery, for organisations and individuals needing support. We are also one of several bodies administering the Government’s Culture Recovery Fund and unprecedented support package of £1.57 billion for the culture and heritage sector. Find out more at  HYPERLINK "" 

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