A host of top musical talents who all share a common love for Manchester and its people will be introducing live renditions of their songs by local residents in the Together In One Voice event, a mass doorstep sing-a-long on Thursday 28 May at 7:30 pm.
Produced in lockdown and designed to celebrate the spirit and importance of community in these unprecedented times, the one-off event aims to unite people from across the whole Greater Manchester region.
Liam Gallagher, Mark Owen of Take That, James’ Tim Booth, Emeli Sande, Mike Pickering from M People, Tom Walker, Denise Johnson, Liam Fray from The Courteeners and the city’s newest star Aitch, will all be appearing on screen for the event.
They will be inviting people to sing along from their doorsteps, windows, balconies and streets – Together In One Voice – and will introduce the set-list of songs via a live-stream on the night, alongside other well-known Manchester faces from the world of entertainment.
Tim Booth of James said: “Events like these are critical right now for the community and I am keen to support people in any way I can.”
Tom Walker said: “It’s great to be part of Together in One Voice, Manchester has been such a massive inspiration to me over the years”
The special set-list of songs will be streamed for people to join in with via MIF LIVE – Manchester International Festival’s online channel – and broadcast on BBC Radio Manchester, alongside introductions and contributions from the artists. The soundtrack will feature around 20 different community choirs and 30 musicians from across the city region who have all spent the last few weeks recording themselves playing their instruments and singing their parts in isolation in their own homes.
Each of these individual vocal and musical parts has then been sent in to Musical Director Dan McDwyer and his team of sound engineers, for mixing into the stunning live versions of the songs that everyone will sing along to during the event.
The playlist for the event will be:
– Take That: Shine
– Martha and the Vandellas: Dancing In The Streets
– Emeli Sande : You Are Not Alone
– Tom Walker: Leave A Light On
– James: Sit Down
– M People: Search for the hero
– Oasis: Wonderwall
Dan McDwyer, Musical Director of the event, said: “It’s been a huge task recording the choirs and 30 musicians including rhythm, horns, and strings, plus coordinating sound engineers and mixing vocals from around 20 different choirs – all recording from their own homes safely within social distancing.
“But what a moment it’s going to be when those choirs, all singing in their bedrooms, are amplified by thousands of voices across Greater Manchester.”
The community led event for the whole of the city region will see Greater Manchester harness the power of music and the benefits of communal singing in an unique event, for one night only, that everyone can join in with.
Mayor of Greater Manchester Andy Burnham said: “Lockdown has been taking a toll on us all but this is a night that will give everyone a real lift. It’s a moment to celebrate the strength of our communities and what people have done to help each in these difficult times. Together In One Voice will help us all feel connected, despite the need to keep a distance, and will be one of those incredible occasions which make Greater Manchester so special. We are grateful to some of our biggest names for supporting our communities in this and creating a moment we’ll never forget. I would encourage everyone to get involved and get out on your doorstep!”
The doorstep singalong is being captured on the night with drones, street cameras and residents’ own films that will be edited together afterwards along with interviews with artists and participants to produce an extended broadcast which will be transmitted on Sunday 31 May, 6pm (also on MIF Live).
People are being invited to send videos of their own doorstep or window singalong from the night to togethermcr.com for possible inclusion in the YouTube broadcast on 31 May.
Sir Richard Leese, Leader of Manchester City Council and Chair of the Greater Manchester Health and Care Partnership, said: “We’ve all turned to music or a great song when times have been tough and all know how uplifting that can be. On Thursday we’re giving everyone across the whole of Greater Manchester the chance to join in and sing Together In One Voice from their doorsteps and windows to harness that magical power of music and to re-connect again with their neighbours and communities.”
The event is being delivered by social entrepreneur Rose Marley and Manchester International Festival, alongside Manchester City Council and Greater Manchester Combined Authority (GMCA), and is supported by Co-op.
Matt Atkinson, Chief Membership Officer at Co-op said: “As a northern brand, Greater Manchester will always have a special place in our Co-op heart and as a business we actively support the mental and physical well-being of our communities.
“At times like these it’s important we come together and bring a little joy to those around us and this event is a great way to lift the spirits of the city region and say thanks to those that are working tirelessly on the front-line in our fight against coronavirus – including our own colleagues. As one the largest employers in the region, we will be encouraging all of our colleagues and customers to get involved and have a singalong.”