By Andy Fawthrop
“Come and watch PSG!” she said. Being a big footie fan I thought “Great! Paris St. German are one of the great European sides at the moment. Who wouldn’t want to watch them play on a Spring afternoon?” Which just goes to show that you really do need to pay attention when someone is actually talking to you.
Before I knew it, I was in a car heading for that bastion of corporate loveliness known as Chippers. Sitting in a seat in the wonderfully-restored Neeld Community Arts Centre. Where was the big screen for the football, I began to wonder? I was shortly disabused of my fond notion when about 50 people, each bearing a PSG t-shirt wandered out on stage. It was at this point that the penny finally dropped – PSG stands for Pop – Soul – Gospel and…er…that’s exactly what they do. Very loudly.
This fund-raising concert was in aid of Andy Phillips’, the Lord Mayor of Chippenham’s, charity Alzheimer Support, an independent charity supporting people to live well with dementia in Wiltshire. The show featured a wide range of pop, soul and gospel tunes from across the decades (just what it said on the tin!)
PSG Choirs was founded in 2014 by Will Blake in the village of Derry Hill. He set up the choir with the intention of using it to bring his local community together, and now runs choirs in Devizes, Melksham, Calne and Pewsham (and shortly to be in Trowbridge also). Together, the choir(s) have performed at Longleat House Festival of Light, Calne Arts and Music Festival, and Bowood House, as well as their previous fundraising show at the Neeld in 2018.
This concert was a bit of an eye-opener for me. Not being exactly a fan of choirs, or choral music in general – probably because I can’t sing for toffee. In fact if you gave me a large bucket, I couldn’t carry a tune. Unfortunately most of the (admittedly very occasional) soloists here couldn’t do that either. Their interjections were the only slight blot on an otherwise thoroughly entertaining and uplifting performance. With Will on keyboards at the front, once the whole choir took off, the noise was absolutely incredible. In full sail, with some gentle choreography, the choir delivered an impressive array of upbeat numbers, covering a wide range of styles. And the large audience, which didn’t quite fill the venue, loved it. Lots of clapping and singing along. You get the picture.
If singing’s your thing and you’d like to join one of Will’s PSG choirs, see their website – www.psgchoirs.co.uk
Future PSG Events:
April 23rd 8pm PSG Masters Acoustic Performance (Pewsham Community Centre)
April 27th 10am to 3.30pm Calne Spring Sing (Calne Library)
May 22nd 5.30pm PSG Trowbridge – Launch Night (Paxcroft Mead Community Centre)