About The Choir Ltd
The Choir Ltd is a business, the directors of which are Paul and Melonie Roberts and Graeme and Kate Bell.
We formed this company at the beginning of 2017, after 3 successful years of working together at Stonefields Choir. We realised that the model we had developed there had the potential to spread to other areas and give more people the opportunity to experience the joy of singing in a skills-based but inclusive choir.
The four directors have diverse professional backgrounds, but found that our values aligned and our skills were complementary.
Paul Roberts is a finance director for a large company and brings his financial skills as well as his new-found love of singing.
Melonie Roberts has a background in performing arts and is the energy powerhouse behind The Choir. She has an almost magical ability to make people feel that they can't live another minute without belonging to a choir.
Kate Bell is a professional choir director, composer and arranger, and arranges most of the music for The Choir.
Graeme Bell is a software engineer with a side of carpentry and commonsense.
Mel and Paul started Stonefields Choir in 2013, at roughly the same time Kate was starting Volcanic City Voices with her colleague Steven Rapana (now a Choir Leader at Mt Eden and Newmarket). So VCV and Stonefields were the first choirs in the new company, followed in 2017 by Howick and Mt Eden.
We believe that everybody has a voice, and that the overwhelming majority of people love the idea of singing but have barriers caused by past experiences, self-doubt, fear of being not good enough and being heard by others. Many people have had negative childhood experiences around singing, which are then reinforced by western culture's approach, which is that a few people are born able to sing and everyone else should keep quiet.
But we believe that singing is a learned skill and that people who have previously missed the opportunity to learn, for whatever reason, can learn at any time, with good guidance.
There is a growing body of research that confirms the physical and mental health benefits of singing. In addition, singing in a group creates social cohesion.
Our central value is to create groups where people can develop personal confidence and positive social relationships, through singing with others.
We are committed to providing good quality musical material and high quality teaching, and to encourage our singers to improve their musical and singing skills.
We encourage generosity of spirit and inclusiveness in our rehearsals, and nobody is required to audition to be a member. We regard our choirs as teams in which people support each other to become more confident and skilled.
We also regard it as our responsibility to provide good quality vocal tuition in the interests of healthy singing and greater enjoyment, and we encourage all our singers to strive to improve their singing and performance skills.
Each choir performs at least two concerts a year, by and large without the use of music copies (in other words, we ask members to memorise music for performance).
Mel is responsible for all membership and practical matters. She is available by email (firstname.lastname@example.org) or phone (021 677 778) if members have anything they need to discuss.
Kate is responsible for all repertoire that the choirs sing and for supporting our Choir Leaders.
Please direct any questions to Mel in the first instance, who will then direct them to your Choir Leader or Kate if she is not able to solve the issue for you.