Chart-toppers are inspiration for new military wives choir

IN GOOD VOICE Some of the members of the new military wives choir in Fareham. Pictured, front centre, is Stefanie Read, a professional opera singer and group founder, and right, Kim Martin.  Picture: Paul Jacobs (120076-1)
IN GOOD VOICE Some of the members of the new military wives choir in Fareham. Pictured, front centre, is Stefanie Read, a professional opera singer and group founder, and right, Kim Martin. Picture: Paul Jacobs (120076-1)
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INSPIRED by the success of Gareth Malone’s chart-topping singers, a 27-year-old has started her own military wives’ choir.

Kim Martin set up a group of ladies from Fareham and Gosport who are all proud partners of serving members of the armed forces.

Gareth Malone

Gareth Malone

She now wants to find more women from around the area to boost the group’s numbers.

Kim, of Robinson Road, Fareham, said: ‘I was watching the programme and felt inspired and I thought I’m not going to wait around for someone else to do it first.

‘I started asking around the married quarters in the area and now we have 50 people.

‘I’d like more people and get some people from Portsmouth involved as well as the other areas. My husband is in the navy and has been serving on HMS Diamond.

‘When he came back after being away for a while to find me running a choir, he was quite shocked.’

Kim is a classically-trained pianist and has sung in choirs since the age of 11.

But many of the women in her group have never sung before.

Professional opera singer Stefanie Read, from Lee-on-the-Solent, was on hand to coach the group at their first rehearsal yesterday.

She said: ‘I heard about the group and I wanted to get involved and help.

‘It’s an urban legend that some people can’t sing. Everyone can sing if they are taught how and I think these ladies show real promise.’

The Military Wives, led by choirmaster Gareth Malone took the UK Christmas number one spot last year with their track Wherever You Are.

Amy Winch, 32, of Monckton Road, Alverstoke, whose husband is a major in the Royal Marines, joined the Fareham and Gosport group this week.

Amy said: ‘Obviously I saw the wives on the TV and that made me want to join.

‘It’s a chance to meet other people like me which is nice because we are fairly new here.’

If you would like to join the group, call Kim on 07856 813 789 or e-mail mwc.farehamgosport@yahoo.co.uk.Kim would also like to hear from anyone who would be interested in acting as a choirmaster for the group.