Arts Lancashire, supported by Lancashire County Council and in association with Horse + Bamboo and Encounter Voices is proud to launch Lancashire County of Song 2024, a year-long celebration of the vibrancy and diversity of Lancashire’s singing traditions designed to showcase Lancashire’s rich vocal tapestry while promoting the myriad benefits of communal singing and open it up to new generations, as participants and audiences.
Lancashire County of Song is all about celebrating Lancashire’s vibrant singing heritage in a way that’s inclusive and diverse.
Our aims are to:
Throughout the year, County of Song will concentrate on four key areas:
The Lancashire County of Song programme is all about bringing together cultural and singing group partners to organisee high quailty vocal concerts, festivals, training sessions, and workshops across the county. The 2024 programme aims to showcase the wide array of singing experiences Lancashire offers and provide essential support for choirs and singing groups, including workshops on securing funding and effectively marketing your work.
Based on Encounter Voices’ research into the impact of COVID on community singing, we’ve identified a crucial need for ongoing recruitment. We’re especially keen to reach out to younger individuals to join established groups. That’s why we’re developing a toolkit filled with approaches to help grow and maintain membership. Additionally, we’re collaborating with the National Centre for Creative Health to map singing groups across the county, making it easier for people to find a group near them.
County of Song aims to spotlight exemplary community singing groups in each district across Lancashire. We’re looking for groups that use singing to promote health, combat isolation, reflect Lancashire’s diversity, and make singing accessible to all. Each month, we’ll share inspiring stories about these champions, supporting them to expand their impact and advocate for singing in their areas.
East Lancashire boasts a rich singing tradition, from the history of The Larks of Dean to the 2022 triumph by Rossendale Male Voice Choir at the Lancashire Choir of the Year Competition. Yet historically, this area has had fewer platforms to showcase vocal talent compared to other parts of the county. Through County of Song, we’re determined to connect individual singers and groups in East Lancashire to a wider support network. Collaborating with Horse + Bamboo, we aim to curate an event and create new singing opportunities in the region.