About the Bolton Warblers
The Bolton Warblers Community Choir began in June 2012 with 40 interested people and a dream to sing and have fun! Although we began in Breightmet, we have members from all over Bolton, and currently average at 8-12 people per week.
Membership is informal, with no audition needed. We do ask for a weekly contribution (waged and unwaged rates) to cover song copies, tuition costs and other musical incidentals, and we have a minimum age of 16 years and over (insurance).
As a community group we have a constitution (available on request) which details the way we run and the committee positions available. We plan to perform three times per year (Spring, Summer, Autumn), as well as ad hoc events to which we are invited. Festive seasons usually see us in supermarkets, dressed festively and having a good time!
Having been in the local paper a few times, we wholeheartedly believe that everyone can sing, that singing is one of the healthiest activities one can do, as well as developing personal confidence and social skills and opportunities.
When and where we rehearse
The Bolton Warblers rehearse weekly at Bolton St Catherine’s Academy, Breightmet, BL2 4HU (Newby Road/secondary/PE entrance) on Mondays from 7-8.30pm. We ask for your mobile/email details to advise you of cancellation during holidays/Bank holidays/sickness. We spend 15 minutes warming up, and then the rest of the time rehearsing our next performance repertoire, a mixture of notation and learning by ear. We end sharply at 8.30pm.
Daily singing is encouraged, whether practising choir repertoire or just singing along to the radio. This is because regular rehearsal develops notation accuracy, breath stamina and vocal strength. Suggested rehearsal exercises:
- Gentle stretches and relaxation – 1 minute
- Easy vocal warm-ups (sirens, hums, scales) – 1 minute
- Breathing technique (long note/sipping/hissing) – 1 minute
- Technique practice (tongue twisters, arpeggios) – 1 minute
- Repertoire practice (especially solos) – 15 minutes
- Cool down (descending scales) – 1 minute
Bolton Warblers management
Our enthusiastic committee includes the following volunteers:
- Chairperson/treasurer: Sandra Spencer
- Assistant Secretary: Pamela Ward
- Marketing Secretary: Pamela Eaton
- Musical Director: Frances Turnbull BSc MEd HNC MBPsS FRSA (not on the committee)
Rehearsals are informal, and performances include white long sleeve or 3/4 sleeve shirts and dark/black trousers or skirts. Christmas events usually involve tinsel and Santa hats!
No annual membership fees have been necessary to date, but the weekly fees cover basic costs, and are:
- Waged: £3.00
- Unwaged: £1.50
A copy of our current repertoire can be obtained from Sandra or Frances in the first instance, and below, please find our current exercises (click and print for larger version):
Social media links
Try one of our sessions to see the difference!