We’re delighted to report that we’ve raised £342.24 from our Twinkle Tube sessions in cooperation with several London Underground stations. Over two days, London City Singers performed and sang Christmas carols at four stations – Westminster, Charing Cross, Covent Garden and Oval – to raise money for Roko 20 Academy and Macmillan Cancer Support.
Roko 20 Academy opened in January 2014 to educate orphans and disadvantaged children in the rural area outside of Murang’a, Kenya. One of our members, Hazel, participated in this project first hand, which made the fundraising activity a bit more special.
Many thanks goes to the staff and management at the tube stations, of course, with special mentions to Pele and Jon at Covent Garden and Anthony at Oval. Without their cooperation, our fundraising efforts wouldn’t have been possible. They were also amazing in providing us with photos and videos of our performance and sharing them on social media!
The wonderful @LCSchorus graced our station yesterday with good Christmas cheer and merriment. #HappyChristmas
— @CoventGdnTube, December 13, 2015
Lastly but definitely not least, we’re grateful for the generosity of the public. Thank you so much for giving as well as appreciating our performances over these two days. Our recorded Christmas carols will continue to play over the tannoy at these tube stations during the festive season. Do tweet us @LCSchorus if you do hear it!
Happy Christmas to everyone!
London City Singers @coventgdntube sounding lovely!!! It’s Christmas!!!! #merrychristmas #christmas
— @steveeypips, December 12, 2015
Beautiful Christmas music @Oval_station with @LCSchorus
— @hannawoodside December 17, 2015
We know it’s still November but here at London City Singers we’re gearing up for festive cheer. Bursting out with beautifully harmonised four-part carols takes some prep time after all. Last week, as part of that prep, eight of us were invited to go behind the scenes of Covent Garden Station and do a bit of recording of songs that will be played over the station’s public address system. This is the second year that we’re doing it in collaboration with the management and staff of Covent Garden Station. For 2015 however, the recordings will be heard not only at Covent Garden but also at other stations in the London Underground network.
Lead section leader, Cat, checks balance
Liss, one of the members who joined us in the lead section last July, shares her experience, “I love seeing the backstage of places people aren’t normally allowed to go, so I was pretty excited. We crowded into the control booth, which is basically a wall of glass and monitors, and a wall of paperwork. Two station staff made us very welcome, with flattering noises about being fans of our work, and various others popped their heads in over the course of the evening to listen. A free-standing microphone was set up in the middle and we sorted ourselves round it, doing a couple of test runs to work out the best balance. The staff was also recording us on video but it was weirdly easy to forget that we were on camera. To be honest, I found the curious stares of the public as they streamed past much more distracting. They must have wondered what on earth eight women in purple Santa hats were doing in the nerve centre of the station!”
We recorded six carols over the course of about two hours. Each one had a couple of rehearsals, with much emphasis on a clean end to the ‘s’ of Christmas (surprisingly hard to get right with only eight people).
Selected London Underground stations will start playing the carols in December, when it legitimately becomes the holiday season, so keep your ears open! London City Singers will also do some live performances at several stations, dubbed Twinkle Tube, to raise money for Roko 20 and Macmillan Cancer Support. If you’re passing through Covent Garden, Westminster or Knightsbridge stations on 12 December, or Oval on the 17 December, do come and say hello!
If you happen to be in London and passing through Covent Garden tube station, you might hear Christmas carols from us played over the tannoy between now and the new year.
It was certainly one of the most exciting and unique things we’ve done spreading festive cheer in the British capital. We recorded three carols – Silent Night, Jingle Bells and Coventry Carol – over the station’s public address (PA) system, which they’ll be playing over certain intervals until the new year. Hopefully this’ll put a smile to some people amidst the flurry of Christmas shopping and merry-making.
Here’s a video of us recording Jingle Bells
We’re so grateful to station manager, Pele, and the staff at Covent Garden station for giving us this wonderful opportunity. It was so cool to be inside the control room with all the CCTV monitors. Oh, and thanks for the chocolates, too!
Check our Facebook or Google+ page for more photos.