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28th Feb 2019
Visually Impaired Choir members Mike Wordingham and Mark Smith get to grips with the harmony at the taster session sm

Visually-impaired singers are being urged to come forward to join Norfolk’s newest choir – a group made up entirely of those living with sight loss.

The new choir is a joint initiative between the Royal National Institute of Blind People (RNIB) and Norfolk’s own sight loss charity, the Norfolk & Norwich Association for the Blind (NNAB).

The new singing group will meet monthly at the NNAB’s Norwich headquarters, led by professional singing teacher and musical director Marion Fox.  No prior singing experience is required.

As well as providing an enjoyable and sociable activity, it is hoped that the new choir will eventually undertake public performances out in the community.

“Singing is such a great way to bring people together,” said Scott Vallance of the RNIB, who came up with the idea.  “There are all sorts of studies which show that it helps with confidence, happiness and even physical good health. 

“Sight loss can lead to isolation, so for visually-impaired people this a chance to come together and have fun, as well as the opportunity to learn from a professional singing teacher.”

At a taster session held this month, attendees were soon singing songs in harmony, with many surprised at how quickly they were able to pick up the new skill.

“Our aim is to support visually-impaired people lead independent, active and fulfilled lives, so when we heard that Scott was setting up a choir, we jumped at the chance to support the initiative,” said Clive Evans, director of business development at the NNAB.

“We are delighted to host the choir in the main hall in our activity centre, as well as support the cost of the choir’s leader.”

The new visually-impaired choir meet on the first Thursday of every month from 11am-12pm at the NNAB’s Bradbury Activity Centre in Beckham Place, off Edward Street in Norwich.  The next session takes place on 7th March.  Anyone wanting to take part can email Scott Vallance at scottvallance1968@hotmail.com or Mark Smith at marksmith@nnab.org.