|In the mid 1970's I was one of approximately thirty young people drawn from schools and colleges within Somerset to form the Somerset Youth Choir. This was a new venture, promoted by Somerset County Council and under the leadership and direction of Robert Tullett, sometime Head of Music at Bishop Fox's Girls' Grammar School in Taunton. At that time none of us was aware what a huge impact this opportunity would have upon our lives as, over a period of some ten years, we learned to make music together and developed a real appreciation of choral music. The inspiration and gifted teaching of the late Robert Tullett, along with strong friendships forged between like-minded people, created a strong family unit. A similar enthusiasm for choral music and sense of friendship are still very much at the heart of the Somerset Chamber Choir today and I am certain that these qualities have contributed in no small way to its success and development since the original twenty-five members launched the choir in May 1984.||From the time of the choir's foundation I have had the privilege of being Choir Chairman- a role which I have thoroughly enjoyed and one in which I have, with some pride, watched the choir grow from its uncertain infancy, through the difficult years of adolescence, to full maturity. Throughout this time longstanding close friendships within the choir have been retained, many new members welcomed to the ranks and a host of new friendships made. It is a dynamic organisation and, like any family, needs constant attention to keep it running smoothly. The choir's existence is due largely to the determination of a small group of enthusiasts who have shared their time and skills willingly and generously. Furthermore, there has been great loyalty and support from its members, including many who continue to travel great distances to rehearsals and concerts at no little personal expense. Large, growing and supportive audiences have also served to motivate the Chamber Choir to tackle increasingly demanding and eclectic repertoire. None of this would be possible without the inspiration of our present Musical Director, Graham Caldbeck, who this year celebrates his first ten years! We are indeed fortunate.||After
serving the choir in my present role for some sixteen years, I believe
that it is now the right time for change and soon the choir will seek
and appoint a new chairman. I hope that you will forgive my
self-indulgence but I am grateful for this opportunity to express my
thanks for the dedication, enthusiasm and support of all of the many
choir members who have served as officers within the various management
teams, to all the members for their wonderful performances, and to
you, our audience, many of whom have become so well known to us over the
Thank you all.
I hope that you will continue to support the Somerset Chamber Choir and its work. It is a sad but certain fact that choral singing as we know it is fast disappearing from our schools and colleges. However, we remain determined to provide opportunities for young singers to perform some of the world's greatest choral music and gain enjoyment and friendships by becoming members of this very special choir. What better way can I complete my time as Chairman than by restating the choir's aims and objectives in which I, and all members of the Somerset Chamber Choir, passionately believe:
I look forward to continuing to play my part, with all members of the Somerset Chamber Choir, to enable us, in the future, to build upon the remarkable success of the past 16 years.
Chairman (1984 - 2000)