History of VU
VU was formed in Sept 2008 after our musical director Ria Keen was watching the TV show "Last Choir Standing" (won by Only Men Aloud) and thought that Worcester needed a great adult contemporary group for adults to learn good singing technique whilst having fun! Worcester is very well served by choral, operatic & am dram societies so the idea was to do something different.
The group started with small performances, mainly outdoor charity events, but like Topsy, it just grow'd, and we now put on regular sell-out shows in local theatres as well as being booked for corporate and charity events across the West Midlands.
We pride ourselves on NOT being a franchise, but a genuine one-of-a-kind group with its very own identity. We also enjoy the privilege of having a
Our Musical Director
Ria is a professional vocal coach and performer of international repute. As a lead singer, background singer, session vocalist, recording artist and arranger she has worked with household names in such venues as The London Palladium, Blenheim Palace, The London Hippodrome, Lincoln Castle and countless theatres throughout the UK.
Ria holds both a Master's degree and a PhD in contemporary vocals & education. She is Principal of The Voice College, a Fellow of The Royal Society of Arts,
and currently sings with & is musical director for jazz vocal harmony group 52nd Street.
OBL (Our Beloved Leader, as we call her) is the driving force and the passion behind VU's incredible energy and is responsible, in a very literal way, for The VU Sound. She has, upon occasion, been described as 'lairy'. We couldn't possibly comment.
Our Executive Administrator
Anne Bradshaw is a Worcestershire Ambassador and handles our admin and back-room communications. She is responsible for the day-to-day business affairs of VU, including the huge amount of paperwork and organising that goes with running a group of over 100 people!
She sorts out all of the admin for members, liaises with venues and bookers, deals with charities (yes, we raise a lot of money for charity every year) and generally ensures that VU runs like a well-oiled machine.
This she does with a smile on her face, a song in her heart, and tweeting birdies circling her head. She's also a dab hand with a colour-coded spreadsheet. Ask anybody.
Having recently retired from her full-time work of many years, Anne has recently re-trained as a massage therapist. You can read all about her new venture on her professional facebook page.