University Hospital Choir started in 2010 as an antidote to the stresses of working life in the NHS. It became a ladies choir only because we couldn’t persuade enough men to take part. However through rehearsals we had so much fun together, we decided to develop as an ‘upper voices’ choir because we liked it that way! The choir currently has over 50 active members made up of current and retired NHS staff and friends. We rehearse at the Royal Stoke Hospital on Tuesday evenings from 6 until 8pm, but on the run up to concerts we will often stay later to perfect our repertoire. The choir is financially self-supporting, mainly through members’ subscriptions but occasionally with payments for performance.
Our mission and values
University Hospital Choir aims to develop its members’ singing in a social, fun and supportive environment and perform a wide concert repertoire to the best of its ability.
We have a wide and varied repertoire, singing both accompanied and unaccompanied. We sing pop and rock numbers, songs from musicals of all eras, folk and traditional songs, classical and sacred music, so there’s something for everyone to enjoy. Some favourites are John Rutter’s For The Beauty of the Earth, Altos’ Lament by William Bowlus, Toto’s Africa, George Harrison’s Here Comes the Sun and the traditional Will Ye Go Lassie Go.
Our annual concerts are in the summer and at Christmas but we perform at various events through the year. We have sung at weddings, at the Penkhull Mysteries Musical Morning, in the atrium (main entrance) of the Royal Stoke Hospital, at the New Vic Theratre and at various venues in support of fundraising events. We have collaborated with Audley Male Voice Choir, Penkhull Village Brass and Clive Barks and Friends to perform joint concerts.
UHC entered a competition at the Newcastle-Under-Lyme Festival for Music, Speech and Drama for the first time in March 2017 and we were thrilled to be placed first amongst a field of talented choirs.
Usually proceeds from our main concerts are donated to our hospital’s charitable fund – UHNM Charity. In July 2016 we were very pleased to be able to donate a cheque for £1750 to the charity, raised from the summer concerts in 2015 and 2016.
Our 2018 summer concert, Family Favourites, was held at Swan Bank Methodist Church in June. We are always made very welcome at Swan Bank so we are looking forward to returning there for future concerts. For more details of our upcoming performances click here.
Sue Pantin trained as a music teacher, but chose a career in industry and the NHS before coming back to music by chance with the formation of University Hospital Choir. Sue is quite simply the glue that holds University Hospital Choir together. Sue maintains an infectious level of enthusiasm every week, showing remarkable patience when our sociable group becomes a little distracted and chatty. Through endless dedication and hard work Sue ensures that the Choir excels at every performance. We’re extremely lucky to have her!