Penn Singers is a friendly, 70 members, mixed voice choir based at Penn United Reformed Church.
As a choir it has a wide range of repertoire and this includes for example – gospel, sacred, folk, classical, pop, contemporary and songs from theatre and films.
Ben, our Musical Director, creates an atmosphere where mistakes can be made without stress and he has a pleasant way of helping you correct those mistakes. Yes we work hard and we are challenged but rehearsals are rewarding and fun! Ben through his eye contact, facial expression and body language give us all confidence to achieve a lovely warm sound with an expressive understanding of what we are singing in items of emotion, diction and dynamics. We are so lucky to have Ben and our accompanist Martin. They have a wonderful harmonious working relationship and the choir certainly benefits from that.
We rehearse on a Monday evening, 7-30pm to 9.30pm during term time at Penn United Reformed Church, Penn Road, Wolverhampton, WV4 5QF. The choir is a member of the National Association of Choirs (NAC) and is a Registered Charity.
Musical Director - Ben Batt
Penn Singers welcomed Ben Batt as their new MD in January 2018.
Ben grew up in Harpenden, Hertfordshire and, as a teenager, became very involved at school as an accompanist and musician in assemblies and productions, as well as with his local and regional church choir, where he worked under the direction of professional composer Alan Hawkshaw.
After completing a 1st class BA Honours degree in music, Ben went on to diversify his musical experience. Working in primary school music education between 1999-2014, he has written children’s musicals for the schools he worked in - many of which have been performed several times. He also ran an after-school Keyboard Music Club, making keyboard skills available to large numbers of children. In 2004 he completed a Diploma in Media Composition.
As a peripatetic vocal and piano instructor at Coppice Performing Arts School, he has worked as Musical Director on the school shows, and directed six lower school shows. Since 1999 he has also been a Musical Director and Producer for several amateur dramatic organisations across the area - often conducting at the Grand Theatre in Wolverhampton, as well Cannock and Walsall.
In 2013 he was selected as part of a composing team for the LDS church's first 'British Pageant' up in Chorley, Lancashire. He has also written many vocal arrangements for the church locally. With a zest for the dynamic power of music to enrich life, Ben continues to enjoy composing, arranging, performing, accompanying, and teaching.
Accompanist Martin Fox
Martin became our accompanist pre-covid and he has brought with him a range of
experience to Penn Singers.
Until recently he was the keyboard player with Maet Live, a Meat Loaf tribute band and
prior to that he worked as keyboard player and vocalist for ‘Out of the Shadows’ – a band
playing music by Cliff Richards, ‘The Shadows’ and other 60’s artists. He has been music
co-ordinator for St Joseph’s Church, Merry Hill and he has also acted as accompanist for
various choirs and theatre groups over the years, as well as playing for candidates in their
Martin is currently the accompanist for the ‘Much Wenlock Male Voice Choir’. He has also
been recently appointed as Organist and Choir Leader at St. Chad’s Church in Pattingham,
a new challenge for him.
Penn Singers look forward to a continuing association with him.