Choir Profile: Oasis World Choir and Band

Details:

Location:

The Oasis Centre Splott Road Splott, Cardiff

Dates:

Mondays 11.30 – 12.30 women’s group
1 – 2.30 mixed group
(Not on bank holidays)

Group type: Performing regularly
Contact details:

http://oasiscardiff.org/

Other Choirs and Groups run by this Teacher

Further information:

This is a Valley and Vale Community Arts Project – created by project manager Tracy Pallant. It has been running for 4 years

We facilitate weekly music/dance sessions at the refugee centre in Cardiff. We aim for a joyful and relaxed atmosphere in the sessions and don’t dwell on people’s difficult times – unless people are really keen to tell us things. We have a core group of singers – musicians both from other countries and local people who keep the project supported so that we can go out and perform/ workshop at various settings. People find this a great confidence boost as we feel like we “own” or at least feel comfortable in all the museums, art centres, government buildings, etc. that we have performed in –  empowering for all of us.

We have also become really adept at making music/ song off the cuff and without much preparation, which totally requires confidence, as we don’t worry about mistakes – we just do and are in the moment.

We have written several group songs along the way, as well as collecting songs brought to us by group members. We listen to each other a lot too.

It has been a pleasure seeing the breaking down of social isolation within the asylum-seeking community, and I think this has been helped by the fact that the project is ongoing. We have also seen Welsh-born members thrive in the environment of the Oasis World Choir and Band.

We were featured on BBC Radio 4 A Singers Guide to Britain in August 2019:

“Roderick Williams tells the stories of Britain through our songs. The instinct to sing is as old as humans themselves and, in Britain, we have been singing our story, consciously and unconsciously, all through our history. Songs that harness a fleeting thought, capture a mood, tell a tall tale, or simply make us smile. In this four part series, Roderick Williams explores different aspects of our British story, through the lens of the songs we sing. He’ll show how songs can transport us across all classes, all eras and all areas of the UK. Each song can tell us something essential about our nation at different times and places by teleporting us right inside the experience of someone who was there. We’ll see how songs have passed from singer to singer, from listener to listener, reflecting who we are as a nation, and celebrating the things we hold most dear. In this final programme Roderick looks at the way that song can express a common humanity — and at some of the songs given voice by people who have come to these islands, as visitors, as refugees and as distinct communities. He visits a singing session for asylum seekers and refugees in Cardiff and hears about the singing legacies of the Jewish East End and Irish workers in Birmingham. Featuring, Laura Bradshaw, Billy Bragg, Alan Dein, Joseph Gnagbo, Marie, Angela Moran and Zarife. Thanks to Valley and Vale Community Arts. Alan Dein’s compilation of ‘Yiddisher jazz’ is called Music is the Most Beautiful Language in the World (JWM Records) Producer: Martin Williams.”