Meet the Choir

  1. Christine Reeve

    I moved to Exmouth in July 23 and that weekend heard La La Choirs at Exmouth Festival. I knew then I had to have La La in my life and I have never looked back. Under the guidance of our amazing MD Sam, I have learnt so much, all in the warmth and friendship of other members from all walks of life. The sound of up to 6 part acapella harmonies always fills me with such joy and amazement. Often hard work interspersed with lots of laughs, an excellent ethos of love and inclusion of all ages and abilities has given me not just a choir to enjoy but a social life with like minded friendly people. Sam tells us if you can make a sound then you can sing and her inspiration, teaching, never ending energy, zest for life and sense of fun, always with a warm smile and welcoming attitude brings out the best in us all. I am so happy and proud to be part of the La La Choirs family.

  2. Jayne Ford

    Well, here I am, 7 years on from my last testimonial… I’m still enjoying everything about La La Choirs, I still come home on a high each week and I continue to make lovely friends..
    In the last couple of years I’ve also joined Sam’s occasion choir which is something I never imagined I would do and it’s pretty special really to be a part of someone’s day and quite a privilege too.
    One of the great things about being in the choir are the gigs and the places we visit to do them .. the Cathedral being the biggest of the year is incredibly amazing.. but quite honestly I just enjoy all of them…we even get to sing on a boat!!
    Sam’s just such a great teacher and makes it all so much fun and we do have a lot of giggles
    If you’re thinking you would like to have a go at choir but are unsure, just go for it because literally everyone is so friendly and you will always be made to feel welcome

  3. Sue and John Bentley

    I had been searching for the right choir for me since the disappointment of my previous hospital choir had been prevented restarting ever since Covid. I was searching online for over 2yrs and couldn’t find a choir that I could commit to as none of them ticked all my boxes or inspired me.
    That was until last summer when I found the La La promotion on FB. The more I read, the more excited I felt. When I told John all about La La Choirs, he too got enthused and said he would go too, after our holiday in September.
    What can I say! We absolutely love choir both at Ottery each Thursday and of course when an opportunity arises to be part of the big choir.
    Everyone we’ve met is part of the friendly inclusive culture engendered by Sam. Her personality, humour and sense of fun are what makes us feel hooked. The skill Sam has teaching and managing all of us to somehow get the right sound from us to create the music that she does. Only found one difficulty and that’s getting to sleep after the buzz we’re on every week.

  4. Becky Over

    I joined La La two years ago and I am still blown away every time I hear the amazing sound we make! I’ve always loved performing but haven’t been in a choir for years. Sam is an incredible musical director and teacher, I’ve learned things about my voice I never knew, even though I have had musical training since I was little.

    Just like going for a run, you never regret going to choir. The happy hormones just flow out and the stress of the day is left behind.

    As the tag line that inspired me to get in touch says…Singing really does make you feel good!

  5. Lizzy Farwell

    I have been a member of the La La family now for almost 3 years after seeing them perform at Exeter Cathedral, Christmas 2021 I knew I had to be a part of this fantastic choir and I haven’t looked back since.

    We sing a huge range of songs from all eras, which I absolutely LOVE and the way Sam arranges each piece is true magic making the sound we produce truly amazing. I love when we get together for our big rehearsals and hearing all our hard work, it really does make me so happy and gives all the tingles.

    One of my favourite parts of choir is friendship, I have met some beautiful people since joining and I love how I can go to any choir session feeling welcomed, share stories and have a great time.

    La La has changed my life in so many ways. Helping me find my voice again with Sam’s constant support and encouragement through warm ups, warm downs, vocal techniques, vocal coaching and finding my love of singing again.

    Choir is an army, a community, a powerful sound and true sense of friendship. I love my time with them each week and the concerts we do.

  6. Tim Porter

    I started with La La for the second time recently.
    I had been in a couple of different choirs.
    I feel that La La has something that the other choirs didn’t have.
    There is a sparkle in La La that comes from the Heart of everyone.
    Not reading music makes us a part of the audience. We have eye contact and Heart contact.
    It is like a massive family where we are all growing together everyone supporting each other.
    When we all get together it is out of this world. So many happy smiling joyous people doing something wonderful.
    And it is helping families through their toughest times.
    We all want the same thing, to sing the songs to the best of our ability.
    Being in La La has helped me grow as a person and given me opportunities and experiences that I had never had which are amazing.
    It has given me the opportunity to feel proud of my achievements and realise my potential.
    Being in the Bass is a joy. We have such a laugh singing together and enjoying each others company.
    The opportunity to hear the other sections is a privilege. The music they make is beautiful.
    All this is brought together by our absolutely Amazing leader.
    She is very patient and nurtures us with great care from d to end
    She is a comedian and has us in stitches every week.
    She is the glue that holds us all together.
    I have so much appreciation and love for La La Choirs.
    It has been a life changer for me.

  7. Sue Warman

    In 2008 my second child started at Bowhill Primary school in Exeter aged 4. As I was dropping him off each day I saw a sign for a choir. Just what I needed I thought, so why did it take me so long to join? My son is now nearly 20 and I have been a member of La La for just 18 months. The epiphany moment for me was my dad’s passing. His love of singing carried me through my childhood. What could I do to keep him alive in my heart – join a choir. So that’s what I did. The La La family made me feel so welcome from my very first session, I didn’t need to be nervous. Sam is a constant source of enthusiasm and gives so much to the community selflessly. There is never a dull moment on a Tuesday night and I always return home in a much lighter mood. The proven medical benefits of singing and social interactions are so important. Don’t leave it as long as I did! Thank you Sam and La La xx

  8. Abi Newman

    I joined La La at the beginning of summer 2024 after wanting to do something for me and something I love and brings joy to me.
    I sang a lot when I was younger and have a love for singing. I don’t read music but that really doesn’t matter with La La. I loved the fact you didn’t need to audition as I think this would have filled me with dread.
    When I arrived everyone was so friendly and welcoming. It was a bit intense on the first few practices as it seemed like everyone knew the songs but I picked it up so quickly and Sam made you feel at ease.
    I love my Monday evenings and the performances. Its not just about the singing its also about the wonderful friends I’ve made.
    I would highly recommend La La as a choir. I’m always blown away at how the songs sound.

  9. Heather Gallagher

    Having met in our local choir 7 years ago, we were very keen to join a new one when we moved to Exmouth in July 2023. From the moment we first contacted Sam we were swept away by her bubbly, kind and fun energy!

    It came as no surprise then, that we LOVED the first session and joined immediately afterwards! Since September we have been involved in a number of local concerts with LaLa and have had an absolute blast!

    Our La La choir session is honestly the highlight of our week! There is nothing better, after a busy and stressful day at work, than coming together with like minded, welcoming, lovely people and having a sing. Sam provides a structured session, sharing her extensive knowledge and supporting our skill development, whilst of course encouraging a natter and some much needed giggles!

    What more can we say? Thank you La La (and Sam) for giving us a place to come together and sing!

    Heather (Soprano) and Jeremy (Tenor)

  10. Lindsey and Martyn Nash

    I was meaning to get around to joining a choir, but like a lot of people always just a bit too busy. In March 2023 I suddenly lost my voice, without knowingly having had a virus. I couldn’t speak other than at a very low murmur, let alone sing! I felt so cut off from normal life, not able to communicate normally, sing at my mum’s funeral, or even call the dogs in from the garden! After 6 months of investigation and therapy thankfully it eventually returned, one day in September, out of the blue.

    It was a huge relief and I immediately started the search for a choir. I chose La La, as A Capella appealed to me more than singing to a backing track, and it looked fun and informal.

    The song choices, usually arranged by Sam herself, are so clever, modern and varied. Nothing stuffy or dull here, it’s challenging in a good way and very satisfying. My voice has got stronger the regular extra technique training opportunities are invaluable. Oh and it is seriously good fun too!

    My husband was probably tired of hearing me droning on about it, but after hearing our wonderful Christmas Cathedral concert, he decided to come along to a free taster session, nothing to lose right?. Although not quite sure if it would be for him (being a bit of a rock fan) he was totally hooked at once and soon found likeminded people in the Tenor and Bass sections.

    Neither of us read music, but we are not alone in that and our musical knowledge is improving nonetheless. We also enjoy going to the social events together.

    I feel so grateful to have found the La La family and Sam is an absolute inspiration with her boundless energy, humour and creativity. Every evening is full of fun and laughter, just the tonic you need midweek, you feel physically and mentally refreshed after each session.

    So if you are procrastinating about giving choir singing a go, just do it! Don’t wait until life gives you a sharp kick up the bum to urge you into action. You won’t regret it.

  11. Rob Howells

    I am 72 now and only joined La La Exmouth 18 months ago having never sung before in any capacity. For me La La Choirs has been one of those, “Oh, I wish I had found this 20 years ago”.
    It has been one of the best things I have ever done and when my wife did the try out sessions a few months after me and then joined as well, I was over the moon.
    I can’t speak highly enough of Sam, our choir leader. Being a retired teacher, I know how hard it can be, but she is brilliant at what she does and instils a sense of joy and fun in us all. She has a big heart and somehow manages to take ordinary people and bring them to a very high standard.
    La La is hard work sometimes, but so much fun and so good for my poor old brain cells. I LOVE IT.

  12. Claire Evans

    I joined the choir at the start of 2024 after wanting to join a choir for years. I don’t read music and wanted something that would have a mix of songs so when I stumbled upon La La I knew it was right for me.

    I was very anxious when I first started but honestly it’s one of the highlights of my week now. Sam’s laidback teaching skills have provided me with a safe space to have a laugh and sing with others.

    You don’t need to be able to read sheet music, the guide tracks have allow me to learn by listening and I don’t feel like I miss out on anything.

    Sam and all of the choir members have been lovely and made me feel at ease in the first few weeks.

    I have only been with the choir for 4 months and will be singing in my first concert in a few weeks. Something I never thought I would be able to do.

    Choir is guaranteed to put a smile on your face!

  13. Pat Yeo

    Why do I Love La La?
    Having participated in various sports for most of my life, I never imagined I would ever commit myself to anything else. But the time came to move on and I was lost.
    I went with a friend to a La La taster session and I loved it from the moment I walked in.
    Life has a way of showing us what really matters, what really makes sense and I know I have enriched my life by being part of La La.
    In five years I have sung in front of large audiences, helped to raise money for charity, have met some fabulous people and have become part of the warmest, friendliest and most compassionate family.
    Sam Abrahams is our choir mum. An exceptionally talented and hilarious lady with the biggest heart, who goes above and beyond for us week after week.
    We are so lucky and I am so grateful for La La.

  14. IMG_1163

    Terry Walden

    Choir: Ottery
    Section: Tenor

    I joined La La in September 2021, pulled there by my wife, as I was a complete novice. I can’t read music, never sung in a choir but have enjoyed singing amongst friends.

    The family, that is La La, and Sam’s (awesome choir leader) style made me feel very welcome from the start. After a just a few weeks I was singing a Christmas concert in Exeter Cathedral.

    I couldn’t believe I ever had the ability or confidence to sing in front of 400 people (including family and friends) and here I was. Amazing.

    Free regular additional workshops have added skills I didn’t know I needed and just can’t wait to see what Sam’s leadership will enable me to achieve.

    A summary would be, a nervous wreck to an exhilarated singer with a fabulous group of people, in just 3 months. Wow.

  15. Simon Turrell

    Simon Turrell

    Choir: Exmouth
    Section: Bass

    This is my third year as a member of the Exmouth bass “chapter” of La La. I’ve found singing with the choir to be both enjoyable and challenging – a winning combination. Apart from making some good friends with other choir members (both ladies & gentlemen), it’s been an opportunity to sing in public – a real boost to confidence.

    Hats off to Sam for all her hard work & dedication, particularly keeping La La going during the wilderness years of the pandemic.

  16. Cassie Leicester

    Cassie Leicester

    Choir: Exeter
    Section: Alto

    I was really anxious about joining a choir as I hadn’t been in one since Primary school. I had no idea what section I should be in and don’t read music. Sam instantly made me feel welcome as did the other choir members.

    Now it is the highlight of my week and I leave choir practice singing and buoyant. Sam is amazing, she will push you to be better but ultimately she just wants you to sing and have fun.

    Come along and try it. You will receive a warm welcome from everyone, have a giggle and sing some great songs.

  17. Les Watson

    Les Watson

    Choir: Plymouth
    Section: Bass

    I joined La La almost immediately after I retired as my wife, Jocelyn (Alto), seemed to be having way too much fun every Monday evening and I had to see what was going on. After just a few weeks I had already settled in and was having a blast with the rest of “The Boys”. The ladies in the other sections are great and seem to put up with all of our mischief while we tune in to the new songs. I have never laughed so much each and every week, its the best two hours of the week, you should really come along and try it.

  18. John Green

    John Green

    Choir: Ottery
    Section: Bass

    I loved singing in the shower (who doesn’t!). I had wanted to join a choir for ages but had a few requirements of any choir:
    – Would accept people who cannot read music (I cannot)
    – Not too formal/stuffy (I wanted it to be fun)
    – Covered a wide variety of music.
    Someone mentioned La La Choirs who met in Ottery St Mary. I went along and felt at home straight away. That was 4 years ago and I am still loving it.

    I have made some great friends in the choir. It’s a real tonic to sing with other like minded guys (and have a laugh). Outside of choir “the boys” also meet socially.

  19. Yvonne Melrose

    Yvonne Melrose

    Choir: Exeter
    Section: Soprano

    I joined La La shortly after moving to Exeter. It didn’t take long before I knew that I was part of something special. Sam makes everyone feel welcome and whether you are a good singer or not she doesn’t mind, she just wants us all to enjoy singing together. All sessions are fun and we have lots of laughs, Sam is a very talented lady, a true professional. I am so pleased I discovered her choir.

  20. Sarah Cressall

    Sarah Cressall

    Choir: Exmouth
    Section: Alto

    La La choir makes me feel great! No matter how my week’s going, when I pop along to this super friendly and inclusive group, I always feel good afterwards. Everyone is welcoming and Sam entertains us all as well as helping us produce a few tunes! 

    Brilliant fun. Even if you don’t know anyone else going, you’ll soon make fab Friends. Thank you so much Sam for my weekly La La smiles ❤️ 😀

  21. Jan White

    Jan White

    Choir: Exmouth
    Section: Soprano

    La La is such fun, as well as a giving us a sense of achievement when we share our singing. The love and support from Sam, and the whole LaLa family is amazing!! Love, love love it!

  22. Kirstie Gregory

    Kirstie Gregory

    Choir: Exeter
    Section: Alto

    La La has helped improve my confidence, my singing and I’ve made friends. Singing at La La definitely makes me feel good!

  23. Claire Colman

    Claire Colman

    Choir: Exeter
    Section: Soprano

    I have sung in choirs most of my life, but when I had my daughter, Sophie, I didn’t have time or inclination. When Soph was about 13, I decided it was time to start singing again and was looking for a choir to join. None of them were really what I was looking for until I heard about a new choir starting up in Exeter, called La La Choirs. Soph decided she wanted to come with me, so we went to a taster session, and 13 years later I’m still there! La La is more than just a choir, it’s a family of lovely people and a joyful time every Tuesday.

  24. jane and keith clay

    Keith & Jane Clay

    Choir: Plymouth
    Section: Bass/Alto

    “You don’t have to be a good singer to join La La and Jane is definitely proof of this – La La has given her the confidence to perform in public which she strongly enjoys doing. Keith.”

  25. Janet Caudrelier

    Janet Caudrelier

    Choir: Exmouth
    Section: Soprano

    In a nutshell, I love singing with La La choir because it’s not posh and stuffy, and we make a very decent noise altogether…oh and it really makes you feel so happy to ‘sing your socks off!’

  26. emma horrill

    Emma Horrill

    Choir: Exeter
    Section: Alto

    I had never been able to find an outlet for my love for singing, finding La La was just brilliant! From the very first night I attended, I felt like I belonged. La La is open to absolutely everyone, and not having to sing on your own/no-audition is such a great selling point. I always tell people all you need is a love of singing and a good sense of humour! We sing, we laugh (we have a sneaky gossip) and I always go home bouncing off the walls, the best natural high you could ask for!

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