Ten Years of Junior FR
Fascinating Rhythm is celebrating the tenth birthday of its junior choir (Junior FR) this month.
To mark the occasion, Junior FR is rehearsing for a special 10th-anniversary concert, which will be held on 4 December 2021 and welcome back some former members. The show will feature the current choir line-up, plus some soloists and duettists who have sung at previous Eisteddfods. The concert will be free entry but with a retiring collection for the Jessie May Trust.
Junior FR was established in October 2011, with sixteen founding members (twelve girls and four adults). Since then, it has flourished to a membership of up to 34 singers, aged between 7 and 16 years old, from across the South Gloucestershire area. They rehearse under the direction of Musical Director, Wendy, supported by volunteer singing assistants from Fascinating Rhythm.
“Junior FR is such a special choir because the girls all come from different areas. They don’t all go to school together but, when they meet up, there’s a real sense of family,” explains Wendy. “Being part of Junior FR builds up their confidence, and they make new friends.”
Even when the covid pandemic disrupted daily life, school and rehearsals, the girls continued to meet on Zoom. They took the opportunity to work on solo performances, learn some new songs and put together their own Junior FR lockdown video: ‘Being a Kid in Lockdown Too’. Since then, the girls have been working on a musical video, recording a soundtrack and filming on location – watch out for the Premiere coming soon!
“Junior FR are a dedicated bunch of girls, who just love to sing!” reflects Wendy. “Despite all the upheaval of the past two years, they’ve kept practising at home to maintain their high standard of singing. I’m so proud of each and every one of them for their commitment and resilience.”
The idea for a junior choir first came about when Fascinating Rhythm’s Show Team was looking for another choir to include on the programme for a Christmas concert. Eight chorus members with daughters of a similar age suggested a ‘mums and daughters’ segment at the concert, and, from there, Junior FR was born.
Over the last ten years, Junior FR has put on musical shows, competed in singing competitions and performed at local events, such as the Iron Acton Proms in the Meadow. They usually take part in The Big Sing at St Peters Church, Frampton Cotterell, in support of Christian Aid and have entertained Christmas shoppers at Clifton Down Shopping Centre to raise money for charity.
Junior FR girls are encouraged to consider moving up to Fascinating Rhythm when they are old enough and, earlier this year, Lily Hopkins became the first person to do so. Lily joined Junior FR in 2015 and has supported Fascinating Rhythm at various concerts and competitions since she was seven years old.
“I’m absolutely delighted that Lily has chosen to carry on her singing with Fascinating Rhythm after being a committed Junior FR member,” says Wendy. “Junior FR girls are all part of our Fascinating Rhythm family, and we would love for any of the older members to come along to the senior choir.”
Find out more about Junior FR
Junior FR is a choir for girls aged 7 to 16 years old. There is no audition process for new members, and no previous singing or musical experience is needed. Members meet weekly during term-time at Iron Acton Village Hall (Friday afternoons, 4.00-5.30pm). They perform at events throughout the year and help to raise money for various charities. New members are always welcome – please get in touch with us via our website.