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Midlands-based choir Tarantara to stage fundraising concerts for mental health charity Mikeysline at Inverness Cathedral, Grantown on Spey Church of Scotland and Dornoch Cathedral


By Val Sweeney

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Tarantara is staging concerts in the Highlands to raise funds for mental health charity, Mikeysline.
Tarantara is staging concerts in the Highlands to raise funds for mental health charity, Mikeysline.

An acclaimed choir will raise funds for mental health charity Mikeysline, when it visits the Highlands this weekend.

Tarantara, based in the Midlands, has raised more than £100,000 for countless charitable causes over the last 20 years.

It regularly performs at venues across Warwickshire, Worcestershire and Gloucestershire but likes to travel and has also performed elsewhere in the UK. In 2015 it also performed in the closing concert at Oviedo Music Festival in northern Spain.

The 60-strong auditioned mixed choir is visiting Scotland for the first time and will perform three concerts in the Highlands after postponing a tour two years ago.

It will appear at Inverness Cathedral today and at Grantown on Spey Church of Scotland tomorrow. Both concerts start at 7.30pm. It will also perform at Dornoch Cathedral on Sunday at 2pm.

Members are self-funding the trip and not charging to perform.

Tickets cost £7.50 on the door and ahead of time online with 50 per cent of the proceeds going to Mikeysline from each performance and 50 per cent to the churches where they are performing, to reinvest in their communities.

Accompanist Chris Long, a professional musician and teacher, has played for Tarantara since 2005 and said its repertoire includes musical theatre, pop hits, classic choral pieces and contemporary works.

“Anyone who thought that a choir concert was a stuffy affair needs to hear Tarantara!” he said.

Tarantara stages a concert to raise funds for the relief effort in Ukraine.
Tarantara stages a concert to raise funds for the relief effort in Ukraine.

Committee member Tim Sturges said Tarantara performs up to15 concerts each year, usually raising between £1000 and £1600 for each organiser.

Mr Sturges, an administrator for a charity which provides free technical support to older and disabled people with their computers and phones, said a colleague, Chris Grant, had come up with a worthy cause and the venues.

“We have usually performed once on each of our travels but Chris found more opportunities for us to perform so we decided see if we make a mini tour to raise even more funds,” Mr Sturges said.

“Our target is to raise a minimum of £5000 from the three concerts while having a thoroughly good time and adding a little to the local economy.

“Once Chris told us about Mikeysline, it was a perfect fit for me personally, and the choir as a whole. After two years-plus of Covid we are all aware of the effects of isolation and loneliness on the mental health of so many people in our communities."

Mikeysline expands mental health support service

Mr Sturges added: “Mikeysline do great work and have wonderful team supporting that work so that decision was easy to make.”


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