Wednesday, July 14, 2010

The Choir - Watch it!

Stop the presses! This anglophile has a new TV crush - Gareth Malone, the young choir director for the London Symphony Orchestra who back in 2007 (damn America for getting BBC productions so far after the fact) decided that he wanted to bring choral and classical music back into schools and working class areas of Britain - specifically lower middle class schools where children are especially disadvantaged when it comes to music programs.

On The Choir, the exuberant and amazingly positive Malone, goes to areas where there's no tradition of choral singing and starts new choirs. Over the 13 episodes BBC America will air, which began last week and airs on Wednesdays on BBC America, he starts one at a coed high school, one at a boys' school, and one in a fairly beat-down town with a reputation as kind of one big bad neighborhood.
Gareth Malone has some serious hypnotic power; his energy is so happy and infectious that these kids and people who would never consider enjoying singing choral music, end up having the time of their lives.
I seriously just want to hug Gareth and keep him in my pocket to give me encouragement whenever I need it. He's completely adorkable. The lives he touches and changes for the better, especially the children, also makes for compelling television. Do yourself a favor and watch The Choir and feel uplifted.

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