I was running a workshop a few months ago and asked people to tell us why they had chosen to come to this workshop, It was an acapella version of Caravan of Love arranged by Abi Moore in my East Leake venue – but it was open to all of my singers and everyone else.

One answer struck me. A lady said “singing once a fortnight just isn’t enough!” And it got me thinking. I love a car journey home to percolate ideas (some of my very best ideas and arrangements have started in cars!) and it got me thinking.

When I started the West Bridgford choir in 2018 I decided after a year to start a little choir as a soon off. I would make it smaller and once a month and sing slightly more complicated songs. I would choose who to invite – but still not have it as an auditioned choir. This was first The Spin-Off Liberty Singers, the The Liberty Chorus finally rebranding as The Liberty Belles in 2020. This choir is still very much alive and kicking with around 20 singers rehearsing in Beehive Hair Design in Ruddington! It worked really well so why not do it again?

The East Leake Liberty Singers are a mixed choir of around 65 people. So I gauged interest – how many would be interested in the smaller version? I hadn’t expected 30 people, but that is what we got!

The Liberty Larks launched in January 2024. It’s a different format – slightly more informal. Much larking about (I named it well) and laughing. More opportunity to make important connections with people and slightly trickier repertoire and warm ups.

We’ve just had our first term and it’s gone so well. We sang in front of the bigger choir as well as in front of friends and family. It’s been brilliant and we are carrying on this term! We’ve taken on ‘Kiss Me’ in 3 parts, ‘Pure Shores’ in 4 parts and Islands in the Stream in 2 parts (much hilarity over the line dance in the instrumental section!)

I did wonder what people felt about it as a slightly different approach….here’s what they said when I asked…

I have absolutely loved singing with the East Leake Liberty Singers so far which is why joining the Larks was an obvious choice to make – more singing? Yes please!  

The smaller set up has given me the chance to get to know the other singers better which is not always possible in a big choir. I love how we can be more experimental with parts and how  a smaller group can make such a lovely sound! With the words of Roald Dahl: If you sing with the Larks ‘you will have good things shine out of your face like sunbeams and you will always look lovely’. To all you lovely Larks and especially Kari – thank you for letting me part of this journey 🎶💚

 I cannot tell you how much joy I get from an evening with the East Leake Liberty Singers and I didn’t think it could get any better – then I joined the Liberty Larks! The utter delight that comes with singing with a group of wonderful people who I can see are clearly loving it as much as I am is amazing and the smaller group means I feel like I am sharing that joy with friends, many of whom are fast becoming some of my favourite people!