A choir made up of members of Derry breast cancer support group The Pink Ladies will perform to their biggest audience to date next month when they sing at the Women of the Year Awards.
The choir was set up eight months ago and has gone from strength to strength in that time, attracting new members and performing at various locations across the city.
It all began in May last year when Pink Lady Geraldine McGurk came up with an idea to form a choir to perform at the annual City of Derry Jazz Festival.
A number of the Pink Ladies approached Siobhan Heaney from Singtonicity to help form the choir and she became its musical director.
Ms Heaney said she was impressed by the talent in the group.
“A number of members of the Pink Ladies knew me from Singtonicity and asked me if I would come in and help them out.
“They performed at a Jazz Festival event in the Gasyard and it went so well that I said that they should keep the choir going and they have gone from strength to strength ever since,” she said.
The choir rehearses weekly in the Gasyard Centre and performs a range of material from jazz to country, according to the musical director.
“‘Lean on Me’ has become a real favourite with the choir and it sums up the support they give each other through all that they experience.” She also said that singing in the choir has been very therapeutic for the members.
“There is such a great sense of camaraderie, everyone helps each other out. Not everyone in the choir has experienced breast cancer themselves, we have a number of mother and daughters as members and everyone suports each other.
“Some members are undergoing treatment and they have found that the breathing excercises they have learned though singing help them during their treatment. It really is signing for health and it also brings so much joy,” she said.
The musical director also said the choir is always looking for new members to join them.
“They are a very open and welcoming bunch and are always keen to have some new voices. We have all ages and all sorts of voices so everyone can find a place in the choir,” she said.