Every year a group of both professional musicians and community participants gather to celebrate the midst of winter through singing and playing together. We all meet at different places all across the UK and use the wonderful 10 albums of songs by Sufjan Stevens as our starting point. We find a choir and a band, some lights and design, we have rehearsals and write out parts, we wear brightly coloured clothes and make new friends. There is laughter and applause. We deliver a quality experience but still keep an inclusive vibe. Everyone feels like they are in the happiest living room ever and no-one wants to leave.
Every year we put together a big concert of Sufjan Stevens' wonderful Christmas music.
On Saturday 19th December 2020 we hosted an online festival sharing versions of the songs that people filmed or live-streamed from home (or other safe spaces). Previous performers from Edinburgh, Lancaster, Torquay, Exeter and new friends reaching as far as Ulaanbaatar, Italy, Brazil and Bangkok created videos to share alongside some live performances.
It was a glorious 5-hour event with 50 songs and hundreds of people contributing, from well-known musicians to family groups, schools and community choirs. There were festive games, readings, guest interviews, and an instant song. It really felt like Christmas in the Room even though we were not able to share the same physical space this year.