Here is our story, but I will start with a bit about myself first.
Do you like music? Like to sing? Well I do, I like to sing, now I can't say I am very good at it - but I truly enjoy it and it makes me happy. It wasn't always that way.
When I was very young, I sang with a school/church choir, but as my voice changed I kinda stopped - hitting really high notes had disappeared and it wasn't until I went into the Air Force and met a few other guys that also enjoyed classic Motown songs that I even considered singing again. After the Air Force, I got married and a few years later, we had kids, three of them (the youngest is 26 now) and in each case within minutes of them being born, I sang to them (House on Pooh Corner) and sure, every now and then I took a crack at the mic during karaoke - but I didn't sing all that much.
To be fair, I did sing for my cat, Harrison. He arrived as a day old kitten and decided that I was his mom (that's another story), but as he got older I would sing songs in the shower and Harrison would make his way into the bathroom and paw open the curtain to make sure I was alright. If I was laying on the couch, singing something from Broadway like Camelot - he would walk up to me, across my torso and look into my mouth, wondering where that noise came from...he always seemed to show up when I sang around the house, purring as it happened.
Now fast forward to a few years ago.
I started The San Jose Pop Up Choir just over 3 years ago and it began as a way to get people together to sing, people that are fine with singing by themselves or in their car, or perhaps in their own homes...
...but instead of it being a solitary endeavor, we offer the chance to sing with others and (gasp) even the potential of singing in public. It helps to have others sing with you.
Since we began, we have sung as a group of carolers, popped up at farmer's markets with Disney songs, songs from Les Miserables, sang at film festivals, community events and tree lightings. We have raised over $3,500 for various charities and we meet on a semi-regular basis and practice, sing and enjoy each other's company.
We also secured the rights to produce as a sing-along event, songs from Hamilton the Broadway musical and have already spent some serious time in rehearsal and have even performed the songs for over 300 people this past September in free concerts.
Our plan is to sing privately as well as in performances, but it isn't about being the best singer in the world, it is about enjoying the art of singing. Just as I did as a child or when I sang to Harrison, I truly enjoy singing with our group, but now that we have been around for a bit, we need to replace some equipment, print lyrics and set up a new rehearsal space and that cost a few dollars.
Currently on Meet-up we have over 800 members, but we average between 30-50 for most events, but it rotates. here is us rehearsing:
WHAT WILL WE USE THE FUNDS FOR? Printing out new lyrics for caroling, a couple more speakers, new microphones, music stands and helping to build a new stage for our rehearsal space.
WHO BENEFITS? The group does and hopefully the audiences that we get to sing for.
WHY SUPPORT US? We are a community group, we do not charge dues and make sure the group is open to anyone that wishes to sing, all we ask is that you come practice with us.
WHAT DOES YOUR SUPPORT MEAN TO US? We get the most out of helping others, singing at a toy drive each year in December or special events where we raise money for others, but we do have needs from time to time and your help will make a real difference in keeping us singing. It means so very much.
If you can chip in and support us, thank you - if you can't chip in and support us right now, maybe you can share our story and help out that way. No matter what happens, thank you for taking a moment to read about us and if you are in the area - please let us know, as we would love a chance to sing with you.
Sinohui Hinojosa Organizer - San Jose Pop Up Choir