The rehearsals must go on!
Those face coverings can’t hide a Games Maker smile!
The Games Maker Choir sing together again!
We all know that the world has been a very strange place over the last few months and without exception we have all had to find new ways of adapting to everyday life.
Choirs are no different, and all over the world groups of singers have been working towards getting together safely to do what we do best – sing – together!
The Games Maker Choir had planned a busy 2020 with another ‘Olympic’ year and other exciting sporting events we hoped to be involved with. Then, as the Covid-19 pandemic grew, affecting countless people’s lives in so many ways, all those plans had to stop – and evolve – throughout the extraordinary year of 2020.
The success of all choirs is due to regular rehearsals, always a bit of a challenge for us from so many different backgrounds – and geographical locations! In ‘normal’ times, our unique group of sporting volunteers travel to London from all over England, mostly by public transport, on one day each month, and also keep in touch with each other socially, both online and with social meetups for those living closer together.
The restrictions imposed by the pandemic has led, as we all know, to a spectacular rise in the use of technologies that enable us to keep in touch with family, friends, and work colleagues. But those technologies require human creativity and ingenuity to make them work well. We are blessed with a team of choir members who have worked tirelessly to keep us all connected, entertained, occupied, and engaged, throughout the periods of lockdown and government restrictions; by devising regular and creative social events online: quizzes, disco parties, and ingenious ways of learning more about each other, all without the need to travel.
The challenges of learning how to use the online meeting technologies, in order to rehearse together have been grasped with enthusiasm and generated a raft of newly found skills that we never dreamed we would need! However, the Games Maker ‘Volunteer’ spirit has prevailed yet again and most now think nothing of joining rehearsals online – easy!
The team who ensures all this magic happens so well for choir members have worked continuously; learning more new skills to use video, music technology aids, different messaging and sharing software, recording tools, break out rooms, and demonstrating incredible organisational talents to deliver new opportunities for the choir, as well as pastoral support for members.
We have also benefitted hugely by the guidance and learning tools provided by the fabulous organisation “Making Music” who have also been the go-to source of knowledge for all the singers and musicians trying to figure out how to make ‘real’ rehearsals and performances happen safely once again!
And we got there!
The first ‘blended’ and ‘live’ rehearsal by the Games Maker Choir for almost a year, took place on Saturday 12th December 2020, with those who were able to, travelling to our regular rehearsal church St Michael’s Battersea, for some socially distanced singing (no hugging, no tea breaks and with doors open!) and joined online by many more of the choir from their homes all over the country.
The hugs, for now, may still need to be ‘virtual’ but the challenges have been met, and overcome, with a ‘Games Maker Smile’ in true sporting style, even if it was more of a marathon than the hoped-for sprint.
And what a joyous event it was!
A HUGE THANK YOU to all the team members who have enabled all these exciting developments to happen. You’re all true champions, proving that This is (indeed) Why We Sing!
If you are a sporting volunteer and would like to join the choir, please click here, watch the video and get in touch
Watch the Choir’s Showreel here
Margaret - December 12, 2020