Award sings the praises of local choirs

Members of the Stamford Bridge Community Choir celebrate the RPS Music Award win.
Members of the Stamford Bridge Community Choir celebrate the RPS Music Award win.

Three local groups are celebrating after the Classically Yours project was named the winner of a prestigious Royal Philharmonic Society (RPS) Music Award.

The project scooped the Audiences and Engagement category at the awards.

Jan Ford, June Mitchell and Sarah Derbyshire of Classically Yours with the RPS Music Award for Audiences and Engagement. Photo: Simon Jay Price/www.rpsmusicawards.com

Jan Ford, June Mitchell and Sarah Derbyshire of Classically Yours with the RPS Music Award for Audiences and Engagement. Photo: Simon Jay Price/www.rpsmusicawards.com

The Stamford Bridge Community Choir, Stamford Bridge Primary School, and the Wolds Wonders Theatre Group were involved in the project, organised by Orchestras Live in partnership with East Riding of Yorkshire Council.

Rachel Whittaker, choir leader of Stamford Bridge Community Choir and Stamford Bridge Primary School Choir said: “We are so thrilled to have been part of this amazing project.

“We have worked with some truly talented people who knew how to get the best out of our choirs.

“We have made new friends, built relationships and created some amazing music. The icing on the cake is to win the award.”

The programme was part of the council’s contribution to Hull UK City of Culture 2017 and formed part of a wider plan to engage more people in music.

The partnership involved four orchestras, Manchester Camerata, Sinfonia Viva, Royal Philharmonic Orchestra and Britten Sinfonia, four venues and the Music Education Hub, eight concerts, three participatory projects and 46 workshops reaching over 2,000 people.

The RPS jury said in its citation “Classically Yours set out to engage people with high quality live orchestral music: young people; families; older people; people with disabilities; and voluntary music-making groups living in isolated coastal and rural areas.

“This project stood out for its clear aims and aspirations,impressive range of local and artistic partnerships, links between participation and concert activities, careful marketing, and its meticulous evaluation.”

Sarah Derbyshire, chief executive of Orchestras Live, said: “To have won a Royal Philharmonic Society Music Award is significant for Orchestras Live and in our view signals a game-changing moment, as the classical music sector acknowledges that orchestras’ work off the platform is as critical as their performances on the platform.

“The RPS Music Awards define sector excellence, and we’re pleased to share this award with the communities who have contributed to the excellence of Classically Yours through their creative spirit.”