WARRINGTON MALE VOICE CHOIR
“The Choir has a long and distinguished history. Its roots are deep within the Christian tradition. It was nourished within a small industrial town in the North of England. Across the generations, men from every walk of life have blended their voices together to make music. There have been times in the history of Warrington when life has seemed dark indeed. Times when unemployment with all its attendant evils has stalked the town. In good times, as in bad, the Choir has continued in the belief that music has the capacity to raise our sprits to a higher plane and to breathe harmony into troubled souls.”
TERRY WAITE CBE
PATRON, WARRINGTON MALE VOICE CHOIR
Warrington Male Voice Choir is one of Great Britain’s oldest choirs, tracing its formation to 1898. During its long history the choir has travelled widely and has performed in many famous concert halls and cathedrals throughout the United Kingdom, Ireland, Europe and Canada. A century of musical excellence has brought numerous festival honours including, National Champions of Great Britain, several times prize winners at the Llangollen International Eisteddfod, and premier male choir at both the Sligo and Bangor International Choral Festivals.
Following the IRA terrorist bombing of Warrington town centre in 1993, the choir became deeply involved in promoting peace and an end to violence in Northern Ireland. Close links were forged with Irish peace groups and for many years since, cross-community concerts for Peace and Reconciliation have been performed throughout the island of Ireland, helping to break down sectarian divisions. The fostering and financing of grassroots reconciliation activities with young people in the interface of West Belfast contributed to the choir’s initiatives being acknowledged at the highest level by the Irish, British and United States governments. In 1996 Terry Waite CBE became Patron in tribute to the choir’s humanitarian role, and now frequently supports the choir’s performances in British and Irish prisons, assisting rehabilitation programmes. During 2008 the choir was shortlisted for Ireland’s prestigious peace prize, the Tipperary International Peace Award.
Fellowship within the choir is legendary and, with a full strength of around forty-five to fifty voices and an average age range of sixty-eight years, the choir enjoys an international reputation as one of England’s foremost choirs – and as a ‘Choir for Peace’.