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RYV is a community choir in Wirksworth, formed purely for the joy of singing.

All singers are welcome to come along, from novices to the more experienced. The sessions run from 7pm - 9pm on Thursdays at The Town Hall in Wirksworth. The fee is £4 per week on a pay-as-you-go basis. Musical director Lester Simpson leads the choir, details below . The choir is made up of four sections, sopranos, altos, tenors and basses. We sing a cappella, learning an eclectic mix of songs in a variety of musical styles from a broad selection of cultures and countries, and most of all, we have FUN!

NB The Town Hall first floor hall is accessible by stairs and lifts. We currently adhere to Covid guidelines to incorporate appropriate safety measures into the sessions.

MUSICAL DIRECTOR                                            

 CONCERTS AND ACTIVITIES                                        


An experienced choir and workshop leader, singer, songwriter, professional musician, broadcaster, keen sailor and cyclist, Lester has a wealth of knowledge of folk and other musical genres and he plays a wide variety of musical instruments, from melodeon to ukulele, and bagpipes to egg!


Lester started RYV in 2009 and is currently musical director of three choirs in the region and works with Parkinson's Choir in Derby. 
From 1990 to 2018 he sang with the renowned a cappella trio, Coope, Boyes & Simpson, in this country and abroad, particularly in Belgium.


Along with his regular choir commitments, he now concentrates on his solo career with 

performances, workshops, songwriting and other theatre and musical  productions.


RYV has performed a variety of themed concerts, some as part of   the Wirksworth Festival,  another with the Derby Girls Choir, and some at local public and private events at venues such as The National Stone Centre, the Northern Light Open Air Cinema and the Lime Kiln.  In summers pre Covid, RYV sang along with the Nightingales choir from Waltham House, performing at the local Farmers Market and we do hope this will be possible again soon.

RYV in the Wirksworth community celebration 2011



RYV often gives the proceeds from concerts to our local and chosen charities. Donations have been made to Aquabox, Wirksworth Swimming Pool and the Wirksworth and District Music Lessons Fund,   Médecins Sans Frontières, Help for Heroes and Derby Parkinson's Choir who sang with us in our December 2019 "Winter Song" concert which raised a magnificent £1000 for their own local branch! In Sept 2022 our Harvest Home concert is in aid of the local Jigsaw Food Bank


RYV featured as the only choir, and some members were also in the ukulele band, in the BBC acclaimed “Marvellous”, a double BAFTA award winning drama, filmed and premiered in 2014. It tells the true story of Neil Baldwin, a very special and unique man, who despite many obstacles and setbacks along the way, firmly believes “life is marvellous” ... hence the title! Because of his long association with Stoke City Football Club, we were also invited to attend a match played in his honour then walked round the pitch with Neil leading the parade to thousands of cheering fans! Being involved with Marvellous was something really different, a huge privilege and most of all great FUN!

The Marvellous DVD is still available online here at Amazon 

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