They’re called the Choir with No Name – a modest name certainly for a group of people whose achievements are anything but small.
The members of this London-based choir are people who have experienced homelessness – and now they’re launching their debut album and will support Coldplay at two gigs this month.
Founded in 2008 by Marie Benton, The Choir’s success in London means plans are beginning for UK-wide expansion into other UK cities, starting with Birmingham in 2011.
Marie explained: “I founded the choir because singing makes you feel good, about yourself and the world. I was determined that the members wouldn’t be short-changed on the quality of the music; they’ve been short-changed on so many other things in life. Our album’s amazing, and Chris’s video captures the members’ beautiful and quirky personalities in all their glory. We’re really excited about sharing them with the world.
“Our London choir has proved to us time and again that the choir works. We’d love to be able to expand that to help homeless people across the UK, and so our plan is to pilot another choir in Birmingham from Spring/Summer 2011, and prepare for a wider roll out across the UK in 2013. In Birmingham what we need first is to recruit the right Choir Director – someone with real passion, musical talent, drive and ambition, and above all a good sense of humour!”
The choir’s debut, The Album with No Name, was recorded at Livingston Studios in North London in September – home to The Magic Numbers and Bjork, among others. It features tracks such as Radiohead’s Street Spirit, and seasonal favourite The Pogues and Kirsty MacColl’s “Fairytale of New York”.