Occasions Singers feel very privileged to have been asked, once again, to provide music for this lovely Service. This is the 5th year that we have participated, and we so enjoy being part of this wonderful day.
Matthew Walker said afterwards:
'Thank you so much for your contribution to the service yesterday at the Minster, as ever you were outstanding which is hugely appreciated as in my mind music is such a vital part of the success.
As with previous years we have received many positive comments, many making specific reference to the quality of the singing and music.'
Around 600/700 people crammed into The Reading Minster for our Annual Candlit Concert! We were absolutely bowled over by the response we had, and hope that the three choirs put on an enjoyable show for everyone! Please look out for our concert next December...
If you live near Bracknell, come and see us singing Carols for the Shoppers at Waitrose in Bracknell! We'll be there from about 7pm - hopefully not too cold! Come and join in...
On Sunday, 17th December, Occasions were asked to provide music for the Sonning Golf Club's annual Christmas Lunch. Having done this for several years running, we were looking forward to the date, and this year was as good as previous years!
Clive entertaining the guests to Christmassy music before Lunch in his inimitable style!
Jacqui: 'What shall we do next?!'
The next day, the 18th, we were back in Sonning Golf Club to entertain Probus/Rotary Club Lunch guests. No photos or video, unfortunately, but the event was just as succesful as the day before!
The 12 Days of Christmas is a great way to finish, with every table participating in actions and singing, and it's always one of the highlights of our Christmas Singing!
9th December 2017
We were privileged to be able to sing at Hampton Court Palace, entertaining the crowds at the BBC's GoodFood Festive Feast event, featuring dozens of stalls displaying wares from Artisan producers.
We started with a half hour in the Clock Court, by the huge Christmas Tree, next door to the PIAFF Champagne Bar, which was a terrible temptation! But we resisted...
After a warming baked potato in Queen Elizabeth the First's Privy Kitchen, we ventured back into the freezing Saturday and went to the Fountain Court, where we sang for another 40 minutes, as people entered the Palace. Lots of appreciative onlookers, many singing along with us!
Hope it got them in the Christmas Spirit!
A very busy Christmas coming up!
Sunday 17th December: Sonning Golf Club's Christmas Lunch
Monday 18th December: PROBUS Christmas Lunch at Sonning Golf Club
Wednesday 20th December: Singing Carols at a Private Dinner
Thursday 21st December: Singing Carols at Waitrose Bracknell (7pm... be there!!)
Saturday 23rd December: Our Annual Carol Concert at Reading Minster! See the front page to book tickets, they're going fast!
Monday 25th December: Singing Carols round the table!
Tuesday 26th December: Singing Carols down the phone to our Didier, whose Birthday is today!
Many of the Funerals we sing at are for people who have lived a full life and have come to the end of that life having fulfilled their dreams and made many friends along the way. We feel that our singing can ease the grief of friends and family, and make the grief a little easier to bear.
Occasionally, however, the deceased is a younger person, cruelly snatched from life before they have hardly set out on the journey. Today we sang for Baby Primrose, who was stillborn.
The hymn was 'I see the Sunrise', and then we sang Kate Rusby's 'Underneath the Stars (you left me)', in the Voces8 acappella arrangement. This is a really beautiful, very poignant and fitting song. Then we moved to the graveside and sang the lovely, simple Carol, 'Still, Still, Still' while Baby Primrose was laid to rest...
On Monday, 4th December 2017, we had the pleasure to sing at the funeral of a lovely lady in Wargrave. 5 or so years ago, we sang at her Husband's funeral, and the family had requested we sing 'Burlington Bertie from Bow', which apparently was the Husband's party piece.
Now, at his Wife's funeral, we were all handed linen handkerchiefs as we entered the church, along with the Orders of Service. We wondered what these were ofr, but all became clear when the daughter of the deceased told us that her Mother's last wish was that we should all leave the church happy, so she had chosen 'Wish me Luck as you wave me Goodbye' to be played as her coffin exited, and the we should all 'wave our knickers in the air'! So, rather than have us all whip our knickers off, she had supplied nice handkerchiefs that we could wave instead!
.....So that was a first!
On Monday 4th December 2017, Occasions were asked to sing Carols and other Christmas Music in the John Lewis store at Reading. We set up on the Ground Floor among the Christmas Trees and decorations, and our sound wafted up the escalators to the roof, giving all the shoppers a real treat! Apart from the usual Hark the Herald Angels, Away in a Manger, Silent Night and Ding Dong Merrily, we also sang such favourites as Do You Hear What I Hear, Winter Wonderland and Mary's Boy Child.
Look out for us again this year, if you're in Reading doing your Christmas Shopping!