Home Privacy & Cookies Articles Events Members Info Music Links Contact Us Media
SANDS SINGERS The Woburn Sands Community Choir

Get to know Michael Gillions

Michael has always been a stalwart of the choir, having been on the committee since the choir started and then serving as the Treasurer and, for the last two years has been the Chair of the Sands Singers Committee, but what makes him tick musically?


Have you always enjoyed singing?

Yes. At primary school, I was a baron in one of the productions and had to sing a joke song with my two henchmen, which I loved. As a teenager, I got into heavy rock music and would sing along note by note with the lead singers of the bands. My favourite was Ronnie James Dio, who sang in Black Sabbath and Rainbow, before starting his own band, Dio.


Why did you first join Sands Singers?

 It was around the time that Gareth Malone was first on television exhorting the benefits of communal singing. My wife and I saw an ad for the new community choir, Sands Singers and decided to give it a go.


Have you sung with any other choirs?

Not before Sands Singers, but I have since joined a couple of smaller groups, singing  Irish folk for a while and now with a popular local Sea Shanty ensemble.


What do you like about Sands Singers?

The Musical Director encourages us to push the boundaries of our musical experiences, so we sing a wide variety of genres and styles…………apart from rap! Like many people in the choir, I don’t read music but I have learnt to follow the little dots and squiggles over the years.

What do you like about Sands Singers?

Jerry, the Musical Director encourages us to push the boundaries of our musical experiences, so we sing a wide variety of genres and styles…………apart from rap! Like many people in the choir, I don’t read music but I have learnt to follow the little dots and squiggles over the years.

Which pieces of music have you enjoyed singing the most?

This has been a real surprise for me. When I joined, I was looking forward to singing rock and pop songs. However, I was scarred by our attempt at Bohemian Rhapsody and discovered, that in a choir, we make the best music when performing pieces written to be sung by choirs, such as the Halleluja Chorus and Va Pensiero. I’ve recently become very fond of singing extracts from Peer Gynt, particularly the Hall of the Mountain King and as a bass, songs from Les Mis and Old Man River.


Which have you not enjoyed?

We recently performed an Enya song, which had great parts for women, but as a bass it wasn’t very thrilling!


How do you feel about performing in concerts?

I really enjoy the concerts, it’s the culmination of all our hard work over the weeks finally coming together.


Michael regularly  sings with shanty ensemble the Sloop Groggy Dogs