A BAND of fundraising musicians from Warwick combined lycra and lyrics for a good cause.
Armonico Consort saddled up alongside TV presenter, wine expert and singer Oz Clarke to cycle 200 miles, giving mini concerts at seven care homes, in just four days.
They entertained residents with their trademark mix of Baroque music and well-known songs and banked £20,000, which will be used to set up more Memory Singers choirs for people living with dementia.
Oz, himself a former professional singer, said: “The transformational effect of music is incredible, especially on people living with dementia. When we arrive, the place is silent and when we leave, we’re leaving a party. Music seems to stay in people’s minds when much else has been lost. That’s why we undertook this 200 mile challenge for a fifth successive year.”
Christopher Monks, artistic director of Armonico Consort, added: “We’re thrilled to have smashed through our £20,000 target and grateful to all our supporters including the care homes who have held dog shows, cake sales and other fundraising events to help us in our mission to bring the power of music to people living with dementia.”
There was also a surprise delivery for one of the sopranos, Laura Moretto, who went into early labour midway through the challenge and was later delivered of a baby boy.
From their base in Warwick, the team peddled via the ‘Three Choirs’ of Worcester, Hereford and Gloucester, to Wells Cathedral in Somerset where Christopher Monks’s career began as organ scholar 30 years ago. There, they joined up with singers from Wells Cathedral School for a grand finale at the final care home.
To donate visit www.armonico.org.uk/encore