Liverpool Lighthouse Choir. Image: Liverpool Lighthouse Choir
The Liverpool Lighthouse Community Choir, which was formed during the COVID-19 pandemic, will be performing at the Songs of Healing concert on Saturday, 4 December at the Liverpool Lighthouse.
The concert will share songs from Hillsborough memorial services over the last two decades which were sung by the Love and Joy Gospel Choir.
What is the Liverpool Lighthouse Community Choir?
The community choir includes survivors of Hillsborough and families and friends of victims. It also has members of the Love and Joy Gospel Choir who have performed at Hillsborough memorial services over the years.
The Liverpool Lighthouse Community Choir met online throughout the height of the pandemic then came together at Liverpool Lighthouse over the summer to record songs for an album due out at the end of the year.
The song Wind Beneath My Wings is set to be released on December 10.
The choir is led by vocal coach and choir director Anu Omideyi who was asked to audition, select and vocally coach members of the public either based in Liverpool or with connections to the 1989 Hillsborough disaster.
She said: “This community choir is perhaps one of the most awe-inspiring choirs I’ve worked with. We met online, rehearsed online and came together as new friends and family to record during a pandemic.
“Some members have personal connections to the Hillsborough disaster having been there, or anxiously waited for loved ones to return home that day or connected to someone who lost their lives.
“Others joined the choir because it meant much to them for personal reasons, including combating loneliness during the pandemic, but amongst all there is a special sense of purpose, community, friendship and the overwhelming desire to pass these on to listeners everywhere."
Inspirational way to bring families together
Jenni Hicks, who lost her two daughters and was Vice Chair of the former Hillsborough Families Support Group, asked the Love and Joy Gospel Choir to sing at the Hillsborough memorial services, which led to the Songs of Healing concert and recording of the song Wind Beneath My Wings.
Ms Hicks said: “Such a positive, inspirational and beautiful way of bringing communities together during lockdown through the songs and hymns the Love and Joy gospel choir sang at the Hillsborough Memorial services over many years.”
Rebecca Ross-Williams, the new Creative Director of Liverpool Lighthouse said: "It’s really quite wonderful for the music from the Hillsborough Memorial Services to have a legacy.
“In response to grief and sadness they were chosen to remember loved ones to uplift and instill hope. They were songs of healing in effect.
“And now when so many people are facing such hardship and loss, especially this Christmas, they can be shared with the nation.
“This Christmas we are honoured that Hillsborough families are joining us at Liverpool Lighthouse so we can share the songs with them as a gift. Our hearts desire is that in releasing the single Wind Beneath My Wings, it reaches every corner of the land to touch the hearts of many."
When is the concert?
The performance will take place on Saturday, 4 December at the Liverpool Lighthouse.
Free tickets to the concert are available through Eventbrite.