Hello and welcome to The Feral Choir website.
The Feral Choir, based in Castle Douglas, have just hosted their Edinburgh twin choir SongTribe for this concert before they all headed off to the Eden Festival to perform together.
The two choirs share the same musical director, Alison Burns, and have been learning the same repertoire of songs over the past months. They included a specially commissioned song by one of Scotland’s most prominent songwriters, Karine Polwart, a healing song from the Georgian mountains traditionally believed to cure chicken pox and a beautiful setting to music of some of Shakespeare’s words. More photos to come soon!
Who we are
We are based in Castle Douglas, in the heart of Galloway, South West Scotland but our singers come from miles around to our Tuesday night practices. We work hard but the emphasis is on enjoying ourselves as we learn new material and work towards performances.
What we sing
We sing a wide variety of songs mainly from British and American contemporary community songwriters. Our Musical Director Ali Burns is one of Uk’s leading songwriters for community choirs and we’re often working on something original that she’s written for the choir. Ali Burns also leads Edinburgh’s SongTribe choir and some of our repertoire is shared so we can perform together.
The Feral Choir is run on Natural Voice principles as defined by the Natural Voice Practitioners Network: celebrating the voice you were born with, rather than trying to train it to an ideal of perfection; building accepting, non-judgmental communities that sing together; welcoming all voices into a group without audition and working from there to make a group sound; making learning by ear accessible to the whole group so that nobody needs to be able to read music.
The Natural Voice Practitioners Network is the professional organisation for choir leaders and voice practitioners who work with natural voice. www.naturalvoice.net
The Feral Choir is known across the region for beautiful and atmospheric concerts. Each December, over the weekend before Christmas, we take a look back at the past year in song and contemporary poetry. The concerts include a wide variety of songs that celebrate local, national and international events as well as carols from Britain’s rich folk traditions. We are joined for these concerts by professionals actors who read for us and sometimes by traditional singers who take a soloist role. In the past we’ve been proud to perform with Sam Lee, Emily Smith, Janet Russell, Polly Bolton, Richard Tretheway, Steve Turner.
We sometimes perform informally in nearby towns or at local events. Have a look at our Diary page to find out what we’re up to.