BIRTHDAYcelebrations this weekend for one of the region’s youngest male voice choirs.
On Sunday (December 9) Hobsons Chorus celebrates its 10th anniversary with a joint concert with Penistone Ladies Choir at St John’s Church in Upper Denby.
They will be conducted by Jane Hobson from whom the choir takes its name and who, coincidentally, conducts both the men’s and ladies choirs.
Hobsons Chorus started when an organisation holding a fund raising function in the George public house in Denby asked businessman Andrew Rogers if he could arrange some entertainment.
Andrew got together a group of a dozen or so men, some of whom sang in local choirs, and arranged for well-known singer Jane Hobson to conduct them and also accompany them on a keyboard.
A year on and Jane and the singers were asked back to do it all again.
It was then that the singers decided they would like to stay together as a small choir.
Jane agreed to coach them and become their Musical Director and that’s how Hobsons Chorus was born.
The choir meets every Wednesday evening at 7.30pm at the Clayton West Methodist Chapel where Jane plays the organ for Sunday morning services.
Members clubbed together to buy music and a keyboard. Once they started earning income from engagements, they gradually bought more music and uniforms of black shirt and silver coloured tie.
They’ve also received grants enabling them to buy another keyboard.
Two of the present choirmen, tenors Geoff and David Cross, are founder members and most are drawn from other male voice choirs, Bolsterstone, Skelmanthorpe, Honley and Millhouse.
The choir has built up an entertaining and varied repertoire of music and as well as singing in local churches and halls, has sung at a number of weddings and in a televised concert at a stately home – Brodsworth Hall, near Doncaster.
They have competed in the Mrs Sunderland Music Festival and five years ago won first prize at the Penistone Music Festival.
Hobsons Chorus’s present accompanist is Craig Schofield who lectures in law at Huddersfield University and is the accompanist of Skelmanthorpe Male Voice Choir.
Jane. who teaches music and singing in local schools and gives private tuition, is also musical director of the Skelmanthorpe choir.
Sunday’s concert starts at 7.15pm and tickets, £7 including refreshments, will be available on the door.