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Sunday singalong raises cash and spirits

By David G Scott

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A WICK woman now living in Glasgow has been praised along with her fiancé for raising spirits and charity cash during lockdown with an online singing show.

Marelle Sturrock (32) grew up in Wick before leaving to study musical theatre when she was 17 and is now a primary teacher living with her fiancé David Yates in Glasgow.

Having met doing shows, they both look for every opportunity to continue performing in their spare time.

Marelle Sturrock from Wick with her fiancé David Yates.
Marelle Sturrock from Wick with her fiancé David Yates.

During lockdown, the couple had the idea to try and entertain friends and family, especially those having to shield and therefore unable to leave the house at all.

Marelle said: "It began as an attempt to put some smiles on faces and spread a bit of positivity during a difficult time.

"Being lucky enough to know so many talented performers thanks to many years being involved in various shows, concerts and study, the Sunday Sing Along Sessions soon became a thing."

The first session was on May 17 with a one-hour live performance on Facebook, with just Marelle and Dave, to raise money for the Save our Venues campaign.

The various faces of Marelle and Dave as they perform online and raise charity cash.
The various faces of Marelle and Dave as they perform online and raise charity cash.

At that time, the idea was floated about continuing it on a weekly basis and opening it up to more people.

The following Sunday, the couple asked different performers if they would be willing to join them for a session.

"The response was overwhelmingly 'yes' and we soon created the Facebook group Marelle and Dave’s Open Sunday Sing Along Sesh!," said Marelle.

"We continue to be humbled by the wealth of talented friends joining each week, as well as the kindness and generosity of those watching."

The performers choose a charity to support as a way of helping to promote "some very worthwhile causes and those close to their hearts".

With over £1000 raised so far by the various performers, David did his own special fundraiser for the Beatson Cancer Charity and had the hair on his chin and head shaved off, which raised over £400.

Dave has a charity shave.
Dave has a charity shave.

"He has also agreed to wax his chest and armpits – something he is just thrilled about," Marelle joked.

Numerous supportive comments have been posted on the Facebook group page by members and visitors.

“I want to thank you for what you have been doing over lockdown with the Sunday singing sessions. It has been great entertainment and you have helped a lot of charities. You should be proud of what you are doing,” wrote Craig McCallion

Evelyn Smith wrote: “Thank you Dave and Marelle for putting this all together. It really is amazing. Everyone has been fantastic that I have been watching. It really does cheer me up. Well done everyone x”

Vicki Colvan said: “This is the highlight of my week. Please continue!”

To join the Facebook group visit Marelle and Dave’s Open Sunday Sing Along Sesh! at www.facebook.com/groups/2565436440440425/

David Yates' own fundraiser for the Beatson Cancer Charity is at www.justgiving.com/fundraising/david-yates18

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