The drive to get to the beautiful BeauDesert School in Minchinhampton, Gloucestershire on Saturday, 7th May was a treat in itself, though we did get a little concerned about the amount of traffic trying to get away from the last day of Badminton Horse Trials. Nearly started on the dot of 7:30pm, just waited for late arriving audience who got caught up in the equine exodus. We had to skimp on risers, so singing sardines with the barest of choreography was the order of the day but we had a really great time with a lovely responsive audience and no serious injuries, entertaining with two 40 minute sessions, supported by our in-house septet RhythmMix. Our MD, Jo Dean, is the Scheme Manager for HomeStart Sedgemoor and knows from first hand experience what a difference this charity makes to families in need so we dedicated one song in particular – ‘Fix You’* – to their group of volunteers; its very emotive words touched many of the audience and FR learned yet again how difficult it is to sing well with a wobbly bottom lip.
HomeStart is a national charity with over 260 schemes running in the UK and also covering families of British Forces in Germany and Cyprus and their aim is to help make the formative years of these children and their parents in need just a little easier. The volunteers, who use their own parenting and home management skills and experience, give thousands of hours each year of their time to stand alongside the families whilst they travel the sometimes treacherous road of parenthood. The majority of singers in Fascinating Rhythm are mothers & grandmothers and, as such, appreciate the pressures of parenting (just escaping to get to a rehearsal can prove a challenge) so it seems very fitting that as a chorus we should support our local HomeStart scheme and hope our contribution goes some way to raising their profile in Stroud. We are very pleased to have raised £1,449 which will pay for approximately 700 hours of support for families in the Stroud area
*Covered by ColdPlay and arranged for us by Pete Nugent (www.noojtracks.co.uk).