Singing Courses/Workshops

We run occasional singing courses and workshops for newcomers to gain  an introduction to Choir singing and for our own members to revise some of the basics.


Our last such event was held on Saturday March 17th at Lutterell Hall, West Bridgford from 10.15 am – 4pm.    nb Click on the images to enlarge!


This was  a free event! – and was planned for participants to experience the feel of choir singing with us.  The workshop was led by our Musical Director Dr Michael Bonshor who is a very experienced music teacher, singer and choir specialist.

We were happy to welcome 10 visitors who braved the very inclemant weather;  The following para, from our Media Officer, Bill Hill, gives a flavour of this event:-

The recent Singing Workshop held in West Bridgford on Saturday 17th was an interesting experience for existing choir members and new attendees.  Throughout the course of the morning and afternoon (warmly ensconced in the Lutterell Hall whilst the snow swirled around the streets outside), we were shown how current research evidence supports the assertion that singing has many health benefits as well as being a welcome social gathering.  Following the science, exercises were undertaken to raise awareness of rhythm, harmony and melody. After the audience practiced a number of  songs to put this into practice, a demonstration of the choir’s capabilities with a small set of the choir’s large repertoire was provided, before we all set out again into the cold and snowy afternoon.

More information from the day’s timetable:

  • 10.15 Registration
  • 10.30 Welcome and intro to choir, musical team and management team (Rod Haslam)
  • 10.45 Mini-presentation (Michael)
  • 11.15 Musical team building (Michael)
  • 11.45 Voice work (Michael)
  • 12.00 Singing Together (Michael)
  • 12.30 Lunch
  • 1.15 Songs (Michael)
  • 2.00 Brief introduction to sheet music (Michael)
  • 2.15 Demo ‘mini-rehearsal’ (Michael, Eleanora and gentlemen will work on You Raise Me up and Catlike Tread)
  • 2.30 Review songs and rehearse for ‘mini-concert’ (Michael with Eleonora to play)
  • 3.15 Break for Q & A (Michael and gentlemen)
  • 3.30 ‘Mini-concert’
  • (Everyone!  Included include simple songs with newcomers and 5 songs by RMVC. Songs from our repertoire were Stouthearted Men, You Raise Me up, Catlike Tread, Georgia Brown, Rhythm of Life).
  • 4 pm Close (Thank you and goodbye – and next steps…)
  • Participants were encouraged to attend the next few Choir practoes when they would be helped to learn more concerning Choir activities and Ethos.



Our first singing course was held in April – June 2017 and was taught by our previous Musical Director (MD) Paul Hayward.

The first session of that free course, on 20th April 2017 attracted 14 gentlemen who, together with the established choir members, were shown posture, breathing and the basics of musical notation. By the close we had progressed to learning two new pieces, one sung in Unison and one in two parts (Tenors & Basses). By the end of the second session we had learnt and practiced singing in 4 parts Tenor 1, Tenor 2, Baritone and Bass (TTBB), as well as some aspects of musical notation such as Tempo, piano (p) and forte (f).

Over a dozen gentlemen attended each of the succeeding sessions, one of whom, Bill Hill, kindly penned these comments via the Cropwell Butler Newsletter:

  • Intrigued by the offer of being taught to sing (doesn’t it come naturally to everyone?) I went along on Thursday the 20th for the first night of this endeavour.
    The newcomers were immediately integrated into the appropriate section, depending on our perceived vocal range (Tenor 1 and 2, Baritone and Bass) I was classed as a Tenor 2 (wasn’t Pavarotti a Tenor? – things were looking good). After a short history of the choir and how to stand properly to sing we were straight into it! A small warm up piece to loosen us up for the main event, Panis Angelicus, an interesting piece with multi-part harmony and in LATIN! Fortunately, we were given an idiot’s guide to speaking Latin and off we went. Considering that the last time I sang was at school, I didn’t overly embarrass myself and the conductor was impressed with all of us. I was hard work though, especially with some tricky melodic variations. Still we all agreed it went well as we recovered in the Royal Oak!
  • The last two sessions were on 25th May 2017 and 8th of June 2017, at 7pm in the Methodist Church, Shelford Rd., Radcliffe on Trent.  At the latter, the Course was drawn to a close with an informal Concert, presentation of Certificates and a social for friends and partners in the Royal Oak.
  • Many thanks to all who attended and the seven new members who have joined to date – we look forward to seeing some of the others join us too.