Tickets are GO! And Roundhouse news…


Exciting news, SOTC fans, tickets for our Old Market gigs on 15 July are now online! Grab yours while you can here:


and 8pm:

And who could forget that on Sunday 9th July, we will be singing at The Roundhouse in Camden as part of the Voices Now Festival – all your groupies can get tickets and more info about the event here: The lovely photo is of our hard-working singers relaxing in the sun after a grueling extra rehearsal for our Roundhouse show!

What an exciting month July is going to be!

GROW your own way…


This term, Soul of the City is proud to be supporting local charity, Grow. Grow is a small local charity which uses nature to improve wellbeing, working especially with people with mental health issues.

The Grow Project has been running courses for over five years, welcoming people from all over Sussex and encouraging them to get outdoors, reconnect with nature and improve their wellbeing.

Grow helps people to learn nature-connection resources that improve wellbeing; have wonderful days out that re-inspire & re-invigorate, and discover community links to develop skills & interests.

Find out more about them here:



Get ‘em while you can!


Exciting news – tickets for next month’s gig at the Old Market on 15 July are NOW ONLINE!!

You can purchase tickets for our matinee performance here:

Our Old Market shows are sell-outs so you better be quick about it!

And don’t forget to bring your fans along to our after show party, watch this space for details…..

Double trouble!


Excitingly, this term the Hassocks and Brighton choirs come together to perform not one, but TWO gigs in one day at the stunning Old Market in Hove on Saturday 15 July.

As this venue always sells out for SOTC gigs, we thought we’d give our fans a real treat this time by performing a matinee at 5:30pm, and an evening performance at 8:00pm! So bring one, bring all, and don’t forget to get your tickets at rehearsals! Tickets are also due to be available to purchase on the interweb, so watch this space….

The only bummer is that even though there are two shows, we are only having one after show party. Guess we’ll just have to really go for it when we hit the pub at the end of what is set to be an epic day!


Sing up loud, sing up clear…


….But not too loud.

Sometimes the whole is greater than the sum of its parts, and that can certainly be true with a choir. A key aspect of choir singing is that the sound produced is the result of lots of voices singing together…Blending in a choir is key to getting a unified sound. It’s super that individuals can sing confidently, but if certain voices are sticking out, it’s not a choir anymore – it’s just a group of soloists!

Plus, variations in volume through the course of a song help bring light and shade to the piece, and achieve those lovely ‘swells’ that get Vanessa really excited! So next time you’re in rehearsal, listen to what’s going on around you. If you are quieter that those standing next to you, sing up!  And if you’re warbling away like Mariah Carey and your choir buddies are sticking their fingers in their ears to save their eardrums, maybe best reign it in a bit!


Will we ‘Finnish’ it in time for the Roundhouse?!


So this July, SOTC are off to the Roundhouse in Camden to take part in a huge festival called ‘Voices Now’.

We are really going to be stretching ourselves with the repertoire for this gig, as we are singing some material that is waaaay out of our comfort zone.

One of the songs that we are going to be singing is a Finnish choral piece, written by composer, Jaakko Mäntyjärvi – who describes himself as an ‘eclectic traditionalist’: eclectic in that he adopts influences from a number of styles and periods, fusing them into his own idiom; traditionalist in that his musical language is based on a traditional approach and uses the resources of modern music only sparingly.

The piece we are singing is called ‘Pseudo-yoik’ – and according to the composer, the words are meaningless and exist only to give form to the music. This is quite a relief, as it means it’s probably not the end of the world if our Finnish is a bit rusty – and the piece is apparently a ‘humorous look at the stereotype of the Lapland folk music’. So there we go!

Sing with your mouths, listen with your ears….


So Vanessa is always banging on at us that one of the most important skills in choir is keeping our ears open, as listening (even to other people’s parts) helps us to understand how the arrangement comes together, and – crucially – prevents us all from chatting away during rehearsals!

But did you know that you might be a better listener (and learner) if you studied a musical instrument at school? Studies have shown that musical training (but not necessarily just passive listening to music) affects attention and memory. It’s suggested that the reason for this is that the motor and listening skills needed to play an instrument in concert with other people appears to heavily involve attention, memory and the ability to inhibit actions. Merely listening passively to music by, say, Toto, does not produce the same changes in attention and memory. So if you were a whiz on the recorder at school, there really is no excuse for not already having memorized this term’s parts!


“We built this city on sausage rolls” (and other misheard lyrics!)


So this week at choir, Vanessa encouraged us to get on with learning the words to our songs, and put down our lyric and music sheets as quickly as possible. There’s no cheating at the gig, after all!

But some choir members get a shock when the lyric sheets go around, and they discover that the words to a song aren’t quite what they thought they were….

This week some of the Brighton choir were surprised to learn that Toto were singing “I bless the rains down in Africa”, rather than “I bet it rains down in Africa”; “I left my brains down in Africa”, or even better, “I bet Lorraine’s down in Africa”! Who’s Lorraine? And why has she gone to Africa?!

If you’ve got any misheard lyrics stories, we’d love you to share them!



Guess who’s back? Choir’s back!


Well it certainly felt good to get the old vocal chords moving again this week, after a short break over Easter. And what an exciting term we’ve got to look forward to!

The summer term will see us getting ready to take part in the Voices Now festival at the Roundhouse in July – a celebration of all things choir.

The Roundhouse is an iconic venue, and we absolutely can’t want to follow in the footsteps of some of the acts that have performed there – the Doors performed their only UK show there in 1968, and Oasis and The Stranglers have both recorded live albums there. Who would have thought that the venue would rise to such legendary status from its humble beginnings as a railway turntable and a warehouse!

If you aren’t already a choir member and want to get involved, come along to one of our FREE taster sessions! Details in the ‘Join In’ section of the site!




What a weekend!


So last weekend saw the majestic SOTC Choir take one two towns and two venues over two crazy days!

The Hassocks choir were resplendent on Saturday night, teaching the audience to sing ‘Lean on Me’ and raising an incredible £443.48 for St Catherine’s Hospice.

The Brighton choir did their thing on Sunday at  The Old Market, and wowed the audience to the point that a two song encore was demanded!

It was so much fun, we can’t wait to do it all again…. Speaking of which, if you haven’t already, don’t forget to get your name down for next term!