Sing for suicide prevention

Emily Macklow.

A collaboration between Downtown Tauranga and the Mauao Performing Arts Centre will see the community join together this month to sing in support of suicide prevention with the launch of new community initiative ‘Sing! Sing! Sing!’

It will launch on November 19, with the public invited to join together for a couple of hours to form a large scale pop-up choir performance. Those who attend will receive a lyric sheet and, under the experienced guidance of music tutor and teacher Emily Macklow, the choir will be split into sections to learn and practice the arrangement.

This will culminate in a live performance of the song that will be recorded on film and broadcast on YouTube. A surprise guest star lead vocalist and guitarist will join the choir for this special performance.

‘Sing! Sing! Sing!’ takes inspiration from the Canadian phenomenon ‘Choir! Choir! Choir!’

Local organisers Sally Cooke, of Downtown Tauranga, and Emily Macklow from Mauao Performing Arts Centre say they approached the Canadian initiative and sought their permission to style the local event on their model.

Also partnering in the event are Sun Media, The Breeze Tauranga 95.8FM, Baycourt and BOP Film, who will film and edit the event.

Emily, who has been leading the Mauao Contemporary Choir at the Mount for several years, is well acquainted with the enjoyment and benefits that come with singing in a group, while Sally Cooke hopes the initiative will be a strong, community-building event.

“There is no denying the power of music,” says Sally. “It uplifts, connects, comforts and energises. The power of hundreds of people together for just a couple of hours to sing, celebrate the community and connect and uplift is exciting.”

Those who attend are asked to pay a charitable donation of $5, while children are free. Downtown Tauranga is covering all event costs, allowing all proceeds to go to the Life Matters Suicide Prevention Trust.

‘Sing! Sing! Sing!’ launches on Sunday, November 19, from 4-6pm at Baycourt Theatre, Downtown Tauranga. Doors open from 3.30pm. Spaces are limited as it is a first in first served event.

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