The Wrenthorpe Village Singers was founded in February 2012 as a result of an idea on the part of local resident Keith Orrell that local residents should be given the opportunity to make music. An article which was carried by the local paper, The Wakefield Express, invited anyone who was interested in singing in an organised group to attend an initial rehearsal at Wrenthorpe village hall on Thursday, 2 February 2012.
About 25 people, most of whom had never sung in a group before, turned up. A few could read music, which helped the cause, but the majority could not. This did not matter, however, as the Group was put in the hands of Keith’s wife, Jenny, who possessed the necessary experience and qualifications to undertake leadership duties. The new singers responded wholeheartedly to Jenny’s teachings and Wrenthorpe Village Singers was born.
During the first three years of the Group’s existence singing standards made good progress, so much so that singing songs in two and three-part harmony became commonplace. Membership increased steadily during this time and reached 50 by the end of 2014, 38 ladies and 12 gentlemen. Engagements continue to be undertaken locally and various charities have benefitted through the choir’s efforts, the most recent being Pancreatic Cancer UK, when £500 was raised in July 2016.
Unfortunately for the Singers Jenny had to relinquish leadership duties in July 2014 but, thankfully, she is still involved as a member of the soprano section and we are grateful for her inspirational leadership. Husband Keith sings in the tenor section and is Honorary President of the Singers. Ruth Strydom was welcomed as the new Musical Director and began her duties in September 2014. She is also the accompanist for St Raphael Singers, Let’s Sing 26, Carlton Primary School Choir and conductor of Parkside Singers, as well as being a musician and worship leader at Rothwell Methodist Church and a piano teacher both privately and at Rothwell Music Centre. It is a real pleasure to have her as our musical director.
Whilst the Singers began life with local Wrenthorpe residents we have welcomed new members from further afield, and are always pleased to do so. Rehearsals are held at Wrenthorpe village hall on Thursday afternoons between 1.45pm and 3.15pm and we would give a warm and friendly welcome to anyone who wants to “come and sing” for pleasure. There are no auditions and it is not necessary that you read music. If you can, however, that’s fine!
The Singers would welcome invitations to sing and initial enquiries should be made to the Secretary.
Hon. President : Keith Orrell MBE
Musical Director : Ruth Strydom
Accompanist : Adrian Clarkson
Hon. Treasurer : Mary Asquith
Hon. Secretary :