top of page


The internationally renowned a cappella singing group Apollo5performed at Shaldon Festival recently. As part of the VOCES8 Foundation, Apollo5 has a passionate commitment to encouraging young people to enjoy and actively participate in singing.

With financial support from the Helen Foundation, Shaldon Festival arranged for Apollo5 to visit the primary school Teignmouth Community School (Mill Lane) to run a workshop for Year 5 children. Apollo5 singers are very skilled in creating a speedy and trusting relationship with children who have never met them before. Using a wide range of creative warm-up techniques, they encouraged the young children to relax, open their mouths, sing out and thoroughly enjoy their work together. Apollo5’s ambition was to give an opportunity for the children that wished to go beyond their workshop experience to perform with them during the evening performance. And this is exactly what happened.

The second half of Apollo5's evening concert began with children from TCS Mill Lane invited to join the singers on the stage tp be greeted by warm applause. The children then participated in two songs. The first was a traditional Namibian song arranged by Craig Link called Meguru.

Apollo5 had made no compromises for the children in rehearsals with the challenge of singing in a foreign language. Within the space of the hour and a half workshop earlier in the afternoon, the children had learned lines from the song and with great concentration sang with increasing confidence. With its distinctive rich long phrases and warm rounded tones the music immediately won over its audience who gave the children and Apollo5 rousing applause. The second item with the children was Marshmellow’s song Proud and again the children sang with power and joy to words that spoke directly to them and to the audience. They left the stage at the end of their session to prolonged clapping and hugged each other in sheer delight at participating in something they could only have dreamed about when they arrived at school that morning. Such is the power of music!

Helen Sowden from TCS wrote afterwards:

"I am one of the staff from Mill Lane who attended the Apollo5 concert last night. I just wanted to say a huge thank you to The Helen Foundation for funding the outreach work for the group to come and work with some of our children."

"They thoroughly enjoyed the opportunity to hear live music and to join in with wonderful musicians. It has been such a long time since we have been able to do something like this and we really appreciated this opportunity. The children that attended last night had a lovely evening and were buzzing to tell me all about the singers and what they had learnt earlier in the day."


bottom of page