SINGING groups in Northumberland are getting ready to rock as a new term begins.
Rock Choir is the UK’s largest contemporary choir, with more than 16,000 members in more than 250 local communities.
One of the groups is based in Ponteland and there are plans to start another one in Morpeth in the next few weeks, as soon as a suitable rehearsal venue can be found.
Northumberland Rock Choir Leader Rob Slater teaches members specially arranged pop and rock songs.
There are no auditions and no requirements to read music or have any prior singing experience, with the emphasis on fun and friendliness.
The groups perform a number of concerts throughout the year, including charity fund-raising events.
Mr Slater said: “We’re always looking for new members, and husbands and partners are very welcome to join us. They can even try a free taster session first.
“Time and time again, I see how singing with Rock Choir helps improve people’s self-confidence and gives them a wonderful sense of fulfilment and well-being. It’s a great way of letting off steam and enjoying some time out each week.”
The choir leader says there may also be some unexpected benefits of joining the group as research has shown that singing can also help to reduce snoring.
“Singing helps to exercise and strengthen muscles in the soft palette, which is where the snoring vibration occurs,” he said.
“A study carried out by the Royal Devon and Exeter NHS Foundation Trust found preliminary evidence that regular singing exercises may benefit people who snore.
“This prompted us to ask Rock Choir members whether they or their partners had noticed any improvements in their snoring since joining. Over ten per cent of respondents said yes.
“We’re always receiving emails and letters from choir members telling us how much being in Rock Choir is helping them to feel happier, increase their confidence and even lose weight, so this is yet another bonus.”
The Ponteland group meets at Ponteland First School in Thornhill Road on Thursdays, from 7.30pm to 9pm.
For more information, or to book a free taster session, call 01252 714276, or visit www.rockchoir.com