Bristol Feral Choir is an improvising choir. We are fun, feral, friendly and welcome newcomers at our monthly Wednesday sessions.
2012: Feb 22nd, March 21st, April 18th,
May 16th, June 20th, July 18th,
Sept 19th, Oct 17th, Nov 21st.
7.30 – 9.45pm. Cost is £7 / £5 per class.
Feel free to come and try it out. Email for further info, directions, if you have any questions or to let us know to expect you via bristolferalchoir (at) gmail.com
The sessions take place in the GreenHouse Studio (292 Ashley Down Rd BS7 9BQ). It commands a fine view on top of Ashley Hill in Bristol
(Horfield / St Werburghs / St Andrews).
The GreenHouse Studio is a fantastic purpose-built eco-studio belonging to choirmember Rik Lander of you-are-here.com. As far as Rik knows, it’s the world’s only combined straw bale and rammed earth building. Through the huge glass wall, we have a view that takes in Europe’s biggest allotment site and a wide cityscape. Foxes, hedgehogs and birds are our audience.
More about our feral sessions
In these sessions, we practice, jam, learn techniques and have a real good play. The evening is filled with playful creative vocalising, directed by Mel McCree. Mel is skilled in improvisation; a feral participatory artist, musician and play maker. She’s led improvisation for many years and ‘does good workshop’. There’s always a great warm up with body-centred voicework and fun exercises and lots of games. Each session is enlivening and beneficial to both the voice and the soul.
More about us
The choir has grown its own style. We develop, learn and practice a common vocal-abulary of improv techniques, from which we swoop, wail and leap in collective pleasure. New members are happily included. The practice is instantly accessible and clearly led. Mel often devises words / structures / performance happenings, and the whole choir develops the idea in rehearsal. There is a strong sense of ownership that welcomes anyone to bring new projects and ideas to the mix. The choir is made up of all sorts of people, ages, stages and flavours.
Our main focus is to collaborate with other artists and groups. As improvisers, we act as a rapid response unit for any event; exploring, embellishing and re-inventing it. We encourage interaction and help make a shared creative space.
Recent gigs and projects
Ubersong, Chapter Arts Centre, Cardiff (Nov 2011)
Singing the death of language, Catnap for IDST, Bristol edgelands, (May 2010)
Bristol Jam (festival of improvisation) with Phil Minton at Bristol Old Vic (Oct 2009)
Colston Hall opening celebrations (25 Sept 2009)
A workshop on voicing dissent at the Arnolifini (17 Oct 2009)
Live re-scoring films and making short new ones
Several gigs at the Cube (2007 on), accompanying sound poets / salad chopping / silent films
Singing the epitaphs on gravestones for Theatre Orchard (2009)
Soundclash with a cyborg at Switch Dialogue 3 (June 2 2009)
Interactive happening for the Ubersong project (Dec 2008)
Complaints Choirs (2008)
Interpretations of seasonal songs for Winter Wondersong, an annual seasonal celebration and fundraiser for Palestine (2004 on)
Venn Festival Century FC @ Arnolfini (June 2008)
Aside from Mel, guest directors and tutors join for different projects, including:
Phil Minton (www.philminton.co.uk), creator of the original Feral Choir concept and international jazz vocalist.
Vid Warren (www.vidwarren.com), young Bristol beatboxer and instrument-glitcher.
Shirley Pegna (www.desperatemen.com, http://mobileedge.org/artists/shirley-pegna), accomplished musician, composer and sound artist.
Hannah Klewin (www.gatheringvoices.org.uk/worldroots.htm), specialist in leading choirs for young people and Sing Up! leader.
We welcome any proposals for collaboration or interest in the choir.