In true Julius Caesar style, we came, we saw, we conquered.
Okay, okay, when I say we “conquered” that is a slight
exaggeration - but every blogger is entitled to employ an element of journalistic licence from time to time.
Regular readers are doubtless all agog to find
out how the Singing for Pleasure Choir fared when we took to the stage in the Jubilee Hall on the University of Sussex campus to enthral an audience with a medley of songs loosely celebrating the “Spirit of Sussex.”
Most of the choir were travelling by coach with other members of the Worthing branch of the U3A but I had elected to drive there and back so that I did not have to leave Mr B on his ownsome for too
long. Mind you, he did have the company of Serena and Co on the Centre Court at Wimbledon so it’s possible he didn’t really miss me all that much - but you never know, do you? Our conductor, the Redoubtable Muriel, carried out a recce of the venue
last Friday, reporting back to me that it was extremely difficult to find. This was not a cheery thought for One Who Has No Sense of Direction. Remarkably, in the event (and armed with a useful map / diagram) I found my way easily to where someone called Paul,
wearing a U3A badge, was waving at me to direct me into the multi-storey car park. Normally I avoid multiple-storey car parks for no particularly good reason but my New Best Friend Forever, Paul, assured me that it was very, very easy to park therein and -
being, as you know, the Trusting Type, I obeyed his instructions and eased my Grand Old Lady into a parking space on the first floor. Eased being the operative word, you understand.
Inside the hall, it was easy to spot my fellow choir members, on account of our “uniform” of black shirts / trousers and red tops. I was similarly clad, having picked up a short sleeved top in a local charity shop on my way home from choir
on Friday for the bargain price of £3. There’s nothing like a bargain, is there?
I arrived with twenty minutes to spare before we were due to take
our places on stage, so we stood at the back of the auditorium to listen to a group of ukelele players. Like us, they had clearly been somewhat challenged to come up with songs they could sing / play which loosely fitted the theme of The Spirit of Sussex,
Myths and Legends. The ukulele group’s interpretation was, it has to be said, even looser than ours. They played a number of Gracie Fields songs on the basis that Our Gracie was a legend - even though everybody knows she was a Lancashire Lass, through
and through - before tackling songs by another Legend - Frank Sinatra. They finished off with a rendition of “You are my Sunshine” which always makes me smile, being the song I sang to every one of my Tremendous Ten grandchildren when they were
babes in arms.
Then it was our turn. We were joined on stage by another group of singers who also have the Redoubtable Muriel as their conductor, a friendly
crowd who made our number up to around thirty. There were a few minor hitches - Muriel on keyboard found herself positioned behind us so that we couldn’t see her and she couldn’t see us, plus the keyboard inexplicably had lost a pedal - but from
the front row (where I had been pushed by people wanting to stay in the background) most of our audience seemed to be smiling back at us. From our first exhortation to “Come to the Fair!” to our final rallying call of “Sussex by the Sea”
we gave it our very best. And, according to our regular pianist, Morag, who had come to support us despite not being required to tinkle the ivories on this occasion, our best was Very Much Good Enough.
I wish I could have stayed longer to explore the displays of Sussex legends - I did spy a fabulous Knuckerhole Dragon on one table while in a room off the main corridor a story telling group was setting up in a kind of tent
- but I had told Mr B I would be back by 3.30 p.m. (It’s the Tyranny of the Whiteboard, I have belatedly discovered: if I write down what time I will be home, I have to comply. Then again, it gives me an opportunity to further develop my artistic
abilities and Mr B reckons my drawing of the choir was my best yet.)
We call our choir “Singing for Pleasure” and yesterday I like to think our name
was especially appropriate as we all had a splendid time. I only hope we gave just as much pleasure to those who were kind enough to listen to us...