Secular Fellowship – we shall sing.
In an exploration of how singing together is used to create a bond between people, I will facilitate a singing workshop in an attempt to create a momentary community. The focus will be on the relationships created by singing together and the links this has with sharing beliefs. For many people in Northern Ireland singing began at Sunday school and church. I am interested in what happens to this desire to sing together if we move away from this faith. Perhaps concerts and gigs are now the times we sing together but these are performances of a talent by a group with which we associate ourselves as fans. Church singing is a singing of equals to show praise for something greater than ourselves.
Alain de botton has suggested that culture can and should replace religion but what are the practicalities of this. Singing in church brings a comfort, your voice is not important as you are not singing to those around you. Can this be recreated in a secular format? There are many choirs and community singing groups that meet but this group is not focussing on the strength of the voices but rather the connections the act of communal singing can have.
8th May, Belmont Tower, Belfast.