Diamond Divas seek new ‘wizard of the keys’

The Diamond Divas ladies’ choir – which has raised over £40k for the Macmillan Unit hospice – returns to rehearsals next month (Sept) and needs a new pianist to join the team.

The 20-strong choir, based in Highcliffe, has for the last eight years been performing in aid of Macmillan Caring Locally (MCL), the charity which supports the palliative care unit based in the grounds of Christchurch Hospital.

The Diamond Divas’ concerts traditionally take place in care homes, local churches and at WI groups, as well as outside local supermarkets over Christmas.

During lockdown the choir was unable to perform, but simply diversified their talents and continued to fundraise through socially distanced stalls at their front gates and by making reusable facemasks – projects which together have netted over £5000 for the charity.

Choir coordinator Josie Spicer said: “We are ecstatic at the thought of returning to face-to-face rehearsals. We are an extremely sociable and fun group of ladies and we simply love to perform and raise money for the Mac Unit. Unfortunately, our wonderful wizard of the keys Jan Leonard is moving out of the area and while we are able to get by with a recorded accompaniment, there’s nothing quite like singing with a real pianist.”

Josie continued: “Our weekly rehearsals begin again on Wednesday September 8th at Highcliffe Methodist Church, from 7pm and we hope someone will come forward and offer to help.”

Neal Williams, Trust Secretary of Macmillan Caring Locally, said: “The wonderful Diamond Divas spread joy wherever they go and are one of the most prolific fundraisers for MCL. We are thrilled to hear they are getting back to what they do best and hope a new ‘wizard’ will come forward soon.”

Anyone interested in either playing for or singing with the choir can contact them on: 01425 270864.

Please note, the photograph was taken before the pandemic.