AN APPEAL has gone out for people to sign up to form a local choir for a special one-off charity performance in aid of cancer campaign ‘Stand Up to Cancer’.
Fraser McGlynn, founder of stage school The Song Shop, has set himself the task of bringing together and creating the choir from scratch and coaching its members in preparation for their performance at the beginning of March. Their appearance, backed by a company of experienced performers from Montrose and further afield, will form the climax of an evening of entertainment to raise funds for the campaign.
Begun in the United States in 2008, ‘Stand Up to Cancer’ was launched in the UK last year as a partnership between Cancer Research UK and Channel 4. A week-long series of programmes in October culminated in a telethon which raised almost £6.5 million.
Fraser this week said he was moved to form the choir and support the campaign after watching a performance during the three-hour telethon on Channel 4.
He said: “On watching the televised appeal for ‘Stand Up to Cancer’, I was moved and inspired by the choir of individuals, all of whom were either undergoing treatment for cancer or whose cancer was in remission. Their bravery in dealing with their condition commanded the outmost respect, but they were prepared to take themselves out of their comfort zone, and sing in public, in support of a campaign that could help them and thousands of others.
“They stood bravely and defiant, united in a common cause, not wanting to give up the fight against this most cursed of diseases.
“We have all experienced the curse that is cancer, either directly, or indirectly, whether personally or through a relative or friend or colleague. It is real, and is not going away. We can all do something to help. Witnessing the bravery of cancer sufferers is extremely humbling.”
Funds raised through the ‘Stand Up To Cancer’ campaign will go specifically towards the UK’s leading clinical research, ensuring that new treatments get to patients faster. Researchers across the country can apply for grants from the campaign’s fund through an open call for proposals.
Reflecting the collaboration with its American counterpart, 20 per cent of funds raised will support joint research to develop new treatments to benefit patients in the UK.
Fraser is now appealing for people to come forward and support the unique event, no matter what their singing or stage experience, to help inspire members of the community to throw their collective weight behind the fund-raising campaign.
He added: “There are local people who have a spirit that is resilient and inspiring. These are the individuals that I would like to come forward, even although they have no singing experience, to stand up and sing, in defiance.
“Their courage will hopefully motivate the community to support this most worthy of causes, and perhaps organise fund-raising events themselves.”
The choir will have several rehearsals in advance, arranged at a mutually convenient time, and will perform one song at the ‘Stand Up to Cancer’ concert, which will be held on Friday, March 8 in the Old and St Andrew’s Church.
Tickets for this special one-off performance will be available from Henry Hogg on the High Street from Monday, February 4. Anyone interested in taking part can find out more or register their name for the choir by contacting Fraser McGlynn on 01674 673236 or by e-mailing firstname.lastname@example.org.