Merrill Academy choir, Melody Makers have capped off a great first year together after playing the Derby Christmas lights switch on event.

The choir which was set up just over a year ago have already performed in front of 4000 people at Wembley Arena.

Along with this they have performed at a Derbyshire Sports award presentation evening in Chesterfield.

Councillor Sarah Russell, Cabinet Member for Education and Skills, said:

“It has been great to see the successes of Merrill Academy choir. The students and staff here at Merrill Academy have put in a tremendous amount of hard work and they have delivered some truly beautiful performances over the past few months which they can be very proud of.”

Cathryn Haywood, Musical Director, said:

“I realised at my first session with the choir back in October 2016 that building confidence and instilling a sense of self belief were going to be as vital as vocal technique and performance skills.

I am so pleased to be working with dedicated and enthusiastic students and staff members who appreciate music can empower and change lives.

We maybe a little community within Merrill Academy but we are reaching out to our local community and beyond.

The choir is proof of what can be achieved with passion, commitment and belief. Remember our name, as Karen Carpenter once sang, ‘we’ve only just begun.’”