Sutton Melody (formerly Sutton Choral), as it is known locally, has been a Choral Society since the early 1960s. One of our well remembered Musical Directors was Joan McCourt whom I am sure some of you will remember.
We still have some of our founder members! Our repertoire covers a wide range of music from religious, musicals, films and modern songs. We have even had a go at singing in Italian and Latin. One year we sang ‘Alice in Wonderland’ to commemorate 150 years since the publishing of this story by author Lewis Carroll. This short musical was composed by our then musical director.
The choir is a mixed choir - sopranos, contraltos, tenors and bass and we welcome any new member to come and join us and enjoy the fun of singing and the challenge of trying out new songs.
REHEARSALS take place St. John’s every Monday evening 7p.m. to 9 p.m. Fees are £10 per calendar month. We welcome new members - come along and give it a go. Singing can be fun!!
Our new m.d. is Diane Haslam, Mezzo-soprano, Choral Director, Vocal Coach Diane Haslam, mezzo-soprano, choral director, and voice teacher was born in Mansfield, England. After graduating with honours from the Royal Northern College of Music, Manchester, Diane sang with the BBC Northern Singers, as soloist in concerts around Britain and as principal mezzo with the London based touring opera company Opera Roundabout. She subsequently joined the chorus of the Netherlands Opera Company where she sang as a full-time member for 7 years, during which time she also performed as soloist on Dutch television and radio, and with the Netherlands Opera Studio. She moved to Cincinnati, USA, in 1990 where she developed a private voice studio, sang as soloist in recitals and opera, and was a founder member of the a capella septet, VoiceBox.
On moving to South Carolina in 2004, Diane taught as Professor of Voice at Newberry College and the University of South Carolina, teaching applied voice lessons, and creating and leading courses in Vocal Literature, Vocal Diction, Vocal Performance and Vocal Pedagogy. She was also conductor of the University Women’s Choir and director of Opera Workshop. A passionate advocate of choral singing, Diane was founder (in 2005) and musical director of Aiken Singers, a community choir in South Carolina, Belles Canto teen girls choir, and Bellini girls (ages 7-12) choral group. She was also music director of South Boundary Singers men’s vocal ensemble from 2016-20. Each of her choirs performed 8-10 public concerts a year, as well as regularly singing for Nursing Homes and in Retirement Communities. In collaboration with the Aiken Civic Orchestra, Diane directed the orchestra along with her choirs in several combined choral/orchestral concerts. Diane’s personal philosophy of singing led her to write a book on singing, ‘The Heart of Singing: Steps on the Path to Becoming the Singer You Want to Be’, which was published in 2011 and is available on Amazon in print or on Kindle. Her book has been used as the basis course text for singing performance courses in higher education, most recently at the Long Island School for the Arts in New York.
In her private voice studio, Vocal Dimensions, Diane has taught hundreds of students ages 8 - 85, both professional and amateur. As well as private tuition, she offers classes, workshops, and seminars in vocal technique and performance for both beginners and advanced students. She has led vocal Master Classes and Choral Workshops in both the USA and England and has developed a ‘Singing for Well Being’ class for adults, and a Vocal Initiative Workshop for young singers, using exercises specifically developed by Diane.
With the disruption of the COVID-19 pandemic, and to be close to her aging mother, Diane moved back to her home country of England in October 2020 and now lives back in Mansfield with husband Bruce Hammond
Our 2022 programme is:
Monday 16th May 6 p.m. Concert at Kingfisher Course Nursing Home Monday 30th May 7 p.m. Concert at Newton OAP Community Centre Saturday 11th June 3.15 p.m. Concert at St. John’s Methodist Church. Saturday 19th Nov t. b.a. 60th Diamond Jubilee Concert at All Saints Church, Huthwaite. Saturday 10th Dec 3.15 p.m. Christmas concert at St. John’s Methodist Church Monday 12th Dec 7 p.m. Christmas concert Newton OAP Community Centre
Jennifer Demicheli, Musical Accompanist
Jennifer lives with her family in Stonebroom. Jennifer has been with us since 2015 and has had previous experience with other choirs and theatrical groups and is a very welcome member of the team.
St. John's Methodist Church Titchfield Avenue Sutton-In-Ashfield NG17 1EU