Composer Alexander L’Estrange joins singers for a family treat

Alexander L'Estrange
Alexander L'Estrange

Crawley scores a remarkable coup on Wednesday, June 19, with a performance of the outstanding Zimbe! at the Hawth—featuring a huge diversity of local talent and star composer/performer Alexander L’Estrange and his jazz quintet.

Local school choirs, Crawley’s own Songbirds Choir and internationally renowned composer Alexander L’Estrange are to come together for a celebration of song and rhythm few are likely to forget.

Pound Hill Junior School Choir, Oriel High School and the Songbirds, joined by the Silver Birch Singers, the Pleasure Singers and FAME will be performing this acclaimed piece, based on African music—for just one evening.

Zimbe! has proved a hit with audiences worldwide.

The mixture of haunting vocals and pulse-pounding rhythm works for adults and children singing together. The Hawth is expecting a sell-out performance: Zimbe! has received enthusiastic reviews wherever it has been heard.

Supporting the lineup will be Billingshurst Choral Society, Horley Singers and Christ’s Hospital Choral Society.

The event is part of the Crawley Festival and Mayor Bob Burgess is among local celebrities to attend.

“I am really looking forward to attending this community event where Crawley people of all ages are coming together to put on a show for Crawley people,” said Bob.

The show will be compéred by Colin Carter, an eye surgeon who is involved with FAME and Horsham’s Space Arts Trust.

The show has been organised by Crawley’s Songbirds Choir, locally famous for raising thousands of pounds for charity. In a remarkable coup for Songbirds, composer and TV presenter Alexander L’Estrange will be playing bass in his own work.

Zimbe! has already filled stadiums for more than 100 global performances.

“We’re tremendously excited to have booked an international talent like Alexander L’Estrange”, said Songbirds leader Jo Eames.

L’Estrange worked with the 150 Crawley performers on Saturday 8 June. He said: “It is a pleasure to be part of an event that brings the community together as it is one of my passions. I love that children as young as ten will be singing with adults as old as 80!”

Doors open at 6pm for a start time of 7pm. Call The Hawth Box Office on 01293 553636. If you’re unlucky, don’t despair. Songbirds may be able to find out if there are still seats available. Phone Jo on 01403 595002 or email admin@songbirdschoir.co.uk.

Tickets are £10 adult, £5 child, £8 senior citizens.