From our members

I was looking for something to do in the evenings and came across an advert for the choir in the Cranfield Express. I have always enjoyed singing but haven’t been in a choir since I left school.

After a quick phone call, when I actually spoke to Steve, I turned up at a rehearsal only to find the choir practicing for their big Hospices Concert. Seeing them all standing there, singing without music did make me panic but Jean soon calmed me down with some reassuring words. A couple of weeks later and I was hooked. We headed straight in to getting ready for Christmas and this provided some familiar territory. Everyone was very friendly from the start and I soon felt like ‘one of the gang’

Singing with the choir brings a lightness to my week and I would recommend it to anyone looking for something a bit different to get involved in.

Rina Persaud

Choir member since October 2014

There is a mixed Choir that meets in Cranfield every Tuesday night,

At the moment the male section of the Choir is in a bit of a plight

Come along and join us, we would appreciate it if you can,

Welcoming all who can join us especially if you are a man.

I have been in SOUNDS FAMILIAR COMMUNITY CHOIR just over twenty six years.

It's fun, it helps you focus and it gives fulfillment when the Choir as a whole meets

our  goal. You do not have to read music, but ifyou can it obviously helps.

The music and a folder to keep it in are provided. It is a great get together.

We meet each Tuesday  7-30pm Baprist Church Bedford Road Cranfield.

David Foster

Men Can Sing Too

For some reason men don’t join choirs.  Perhaps because it’s not their thing, or because they don’t think they can sing?  That’s what I used to think, but I’ve changed my mind.  I’m not expecting ever to be a lead soloist, but choirs don’t need many people like that.  I’ve found the reward and satisfaction that comes from singing in a choir, especially when it goes well and knowing that I’ve played a part in it.  There’s something about singing – studies show that it’s good for our health and our mood, and it’s also fun.  There’s a special reward too in taking on a challenge and finding that yes, I can do it.

Our village choir, Sounds Familiar Community Choir, is particularly welcoming.  I hope my friends there won’t mind me saying, but we don’t look a particularly promising bunch.  Our main qualification is a willingness to give it a go, and not necessarily any great musical gift (although there are some who are true musicians). Cranfield’s very own Gareth Malone, our musical director Jean Lloyd, somehow manages to train and blend our voices so that we often surprise ourselves with what we achieve.  The weekly practices test us, but always with more fun than pain, and they unfailingly cheer me up.  We perform at a few local concerts each year with a wide range of musical styles.

We are particularly aiming to recruit more tenors and basses.  If you’re tempted (or your wife just wants you out of the house on Tuesday evenings) do get in touch: you are sure of a welcome.  You will probably surprise yourself by how much you enjoy it – whether you’ve already had years singing in choirs, or you’ve never sung since leaving school.

Stephen Hobbs.

I have been very ill with ME and fibromyalgia for several years, I had become socially isolated and developed anxiety and depression. It had been suggested that singing might be a good activity for me.  I had been to a pop-up choir locally for six weeks and enjoyed it immensely, so decided to look for a suitable local choir for me. I mentioned it in conversation one day to someone at my swimming group and it was suggested I try Sounds Familiar.  I looked the website and went along to meet them one Tuesday evening. It just so happened that the evening I chose was the Choir’s social evening! However, it gave me the opportunity to chat with members of the choir and find out a bit more, I was reassured my inability to read music would not be a problem.  I then started attending rehearsals, I remember the trepidation when handed my first piece of music and even trying to follow what was happening was a challenge, I was like the proverbial rabbit in the headlights.  The “experts” sitting near me were only too willing to help me out, pointing out where we were.  I must admit I was overwhelmed, but I was willing to give week two a try. Week two I was equally anxiety ridden, but I battled on and even managed to keep up with following the music, just a bit.  I was given a folder of music to take home and a log-in for the members area of the web site, where I could listen to the music we were learning at home. I was actually singing with a choir!  I then suddenly realised that the Summer Concert we were rehearsing for meant singing in public, I wasn't sure I could manage that. But the ever-supportive members of the choir were reassuring; the big day came; I was absolutely terrified. Jean, the MD said if all else fails, smile and just open and shut your mouth ... the audience won't know. But instead I sang my heart out, first time singing in public, it was great!  

I have been attending rehearsals weekly and singing with the choir at events over the past fifteen months.  I have found singing to be a wonderful escape, I am starting to understand the music and look forward to learning and enjoying more singing with this friendly choir.

Jan Hubble – April 2018