Cyprus Mail

Singers wanted to add their voices to charity warblers

By Bejay Browne

A GROUP of amateur singers based in Paphos have put out an open call for new members.

The Paphos Zingers, currently with 36 members, were formed in 2010 and have since raised tens of thousands of euros for local charities.

Last year, they collected more than €13,000 for the Paphos Cancer Patients Support Group (CPSG) and have chosen to continue to support this charity in 2015. Some of the choir members are cancer sufferers, or have family members or friends who have been affected by various forms of the illness.

“They do a phenomenal job and help so many people. They aren’t funded by the government and yet their services are so necessary. We are pleased to be able to help them again this year,” said Zinger member and public relations officer Karen Roe.

CPSG supports the Association of Cancer Patients and Friends (PASYKAF) through fundraising. They help to provide numerous services including free home nursing, psychosocial support, travel to the oncology centre in Nicosia and a free helpline.

Roe said the group is on the lookout for new members to swell the ranks, particularly male voices and younger singers.

“We would like to add songs where male voices are featured and they can sing the lead. We would also like to encourage younger singers, as we had a number of younger members who have now gone to college.”

The group rehearse once a week on Monday evenings at Marathounda village hall from 6.30pm. Roe assured that only a love of singing is required and that there isn’t an audition to worry about.

“As long as you can hold a tune we would love you to come along.”

The Zingers perform at numerous events from bucket shaking at Paphos airport to raise funds, to private functions, concerts and events.

“We are performing at two spring fairs this Saturday. The first is at Christos café in Paphos market and the second is at the Samaritans fair at Angelika restaurant. Our largest event is on June 5 at Kouklia village square where about 300-400 people attend. The local taverns get involved and we raise funds for CPSG, it’s a great night.”

The group, which Roe said are best described as a contemporary rock choir, has greatly improved under the guidance of professional voice coach of Melanie Ballard, she said.

Ballard has now taken on the role of Musical Director, which entails writing the arrangements and harmonies and coaching the group through their repertoire, following the conductor and previous MD leaving in October due to relocation.

Well known entertainer Tina Chester has taken on the role of conductor.

Roe said: “Tina is an operatic soprano and has performed at concerts, functions and shows including operatic arias, popular songs and musical theatre. She taught in further education, and worked in theatre schools and also had her own vocal studio at her home.”

Chester is currently performing at concerts and formal dinners around Paphos and Limassol.

The professional singer said: “I am very pleased to have been invited recently to join the Paphos Zingers Rock Choir as their conductor. I hope that my own enthusiasm will be useful to the group and that we can all share in the joy of making music.”

The Zingers are also available for bookings and functions such as weddings (they have already been booked for a number this year) and birthday parties. They also offer ‘Zingergrams.’

For membership contact Irene Shipley (m) 97718532.

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