Photo credit: Adam Prosser
By JAMES TWOMEY
A choir network with multiple groups across the city is urging people to “escape their chaos and sing” as a way to relieve stress in their lives and make friends.
Singology is a group of choirs in London founded and taught by Mark De-Lisser (pictured above) who worked as a vocal coach on TV programmes The Voice and Let It Shine.
“The idea is to give people an outlet,” said Mark. “For other choir groups it might be about performance and it is for us as well, but our thing is about mental health.
“It’s a way to escape from your job, your boss, whatever is stressful in your life and help people live more fulfilling lives.”
Singology started 15 years ago in central London and has grown across the capital with choir groups now in Forest Hill, Greenwich, London Bridge and Croydon.
But it is not hymnal choir music that Mark likes to sing, Singology takes on a range of genres including soul, gospel and theatre.
“We want to make sure there is something for absolutely everyone. We’re strengthening the community to connect to something bigger than yourself,” said Mark.
“There should be a freedom, happiness, joy and a release in the two hours that you get to sing each week.”
Mark, who grew up in Streatham and went to Tulse Hill Boys School, stressed the group was not about success but Singology has achieved great success, even if inadvertently.
He said: “Probably the biggest thing we’ve done is perform for Stormzy at V-fest in 2017, we were his backing singers for his single Blinded By Your Grace.
“That was brilliant. We had 60 members on stage and it was an amazing experience to sing in front of 60,000 people.
“The members are not professionals so to put them on stage with Stormzy was a joy for them and me.”
Despite these moments, Mark wants to keep Singology on track with its real aim of bringing the community together and providing an escape from the daily routine.
“Lots of people come in who are lonely, we have people from abroad who might not know anyone who join and make lots of friends, we’ve even had some singers go on to be professionals.
“But Singology is there for you, for the people to come and escape your chaos and be with other people escaping their chaos and we can all have a good time together.”
To find a Singology choir group near you, visit www.singologychoir.com