Singers who have had their voice box removed proved there was plenty to shout about as they performed a special concert at a Preston church.
Members of Preston Laryngectomy Choir and Shout at Cancer, a charity supporting people after a laryngectomy, hosted the Outspoken Jazz Night at Crossgate Church.
The concert evolved from spoken word workshops used to maximize the intonation of the voice and create a narrative of testimonials and poetry to explain the life after laryngectomy.
Members integrated the lyrics into an empowering selection of jazz improvisations and our laryngectomy group will proudly recite them live on the day of the concert.
Read more: Even without a voice box, members of Preston and Chorley District Laryngectomy Association can still sing and are ready to Shout at Cancer
Peter Edwards, jazz pianist, composer and musical director, says: “We spent a lot of time in selecting the jazz themes to empower and integrate the spoken word poetry based on the stories of people who have lost their voice box.
“We aim to create a stimulating and interactive environment for collaborative artistic performance between cancer patients, their relatives or supporters and a professional group of musicians and poets. The outcome is a statement performed live by our participants: a beautiful expression of inspiring resilience to adversity.”
Jim Brewster, Preston Laryngectomy Choir member, says: “It is an incredible feeling to be part of this choir, I couldn’t even sing before, but we are doing this together and we are enjoying it. It gave us back our confidence.
Another choir member, Kim Winterton, says: “What we are doing is quite amazing and has a positive effect on the laryngectomy community. The concerts we do with Shout at Cancer are a different way to explain what laryngectomy is to a broader audience and in a very inspiring way, with music.”
Director of Shout at Cancer, Dr Thomas Moors, says: “Our aim is to improve the voice and quality of life after laryngectomy and to build confidence. We use workshops that incorporate breathing, singing and acting techniques with public performances and collaboration with musicians, singers and actors.
“There’s more music in your voice than you think and our techniques and approach are allowing our members to realise this and express themselves.”