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Inspiration Choir Celebrates 10 Years

Posted on 8 July 2019


A Newcastle choir that now performs at Sage Gateshead and around the world is celebrating its 10th birthday.

Inspiration Choir was set up in 2009 by Gary Griffiths with a firm belief that singing in a large group is life-affirming and fulfilling. It is open to anyone that wants to sing and the choir, which has 200 members, has performed at some of the world’s most iconic buildings and locations.

On Sunday (July 14th) Inspiration will recreate their first ever concert from 10 years ago – Songs of Power – at Sage Gateshead with Royal Northern Sinfonia, singing choral blockbusters such as Bridge Over Troubled Water, O Fortuna and the Hallelujah Chorus.

Sue Mitchell joined Inspiration as a singer 10 years ago and is now responsible for taking the choir on tour across the region and the globe!

Inspiration have performed at Disneyland Paris, under the Statue of Liberty, at a flash mob in Times Square and on the Spanish Steps in Rome. They have also performed fundraising concerts for charities such as Save the Children and Help for Heroes.

Sue, who works as a research and development manager at Teeside University, said the secret to Inspiration’s success is its connection with the audience.

“I joined as a singer and then started taking on voluntary tasks like taking the register. Before I knew it I was Director of Community Involvement, liaising with other venues and orchestras and organising tours,” she said.

“We perform without music so there are no barriers between us and the audience. Our contact with them is vital because we love to share the story of whatever we are singing.

“We sing such a variety of music, from the Hallelujah Chorus a capella to musicals. There are really interesting parts for all different voice types and of course there are lots of chances to sing with Royal Northern Sinfonia in the iconic Sage Gateshead building.”

Mother of three Sue, who hadn’t done any singing since high school, said joining Inspiration was about finding time for herself.

She added: “I was hooked from the first rehearsal. All of our members have different reasons for joining – loneliness, a break from busy life, to build confidence and generally improve health and well-being.

“If you’ve had a bad day, you come along and sing and leave with such a fantastic feeling. Making music with a group of people from all walks of life and singing with one voice is a very powerful thing.”

Inspiration meet once a week. Concerts are held at Sage Gateshead but there are also events and workshops within the community. To find out more visit www.inspirationuk.com

Tickets for Songs of Power at Sage Gateshead cost from £10 to £19. Concession and family tickets are available. To book visit www.sagegateshead.com