Friday 29 Aug 2014
Choirmaster Gareth Malone returns to BBC Two this autumn with the fourth series of the BAFTA and RTS award-winning series The Choir – and this series is set to be his most ambitious and emotional challenge to date.
The Choir: Military Families (working title) sees Gareth working with the partners and children of the armed services from the Chivenor barracks in Devon who have been deployed to Afghanistan.
The base is home to a mix of Royal Marines, Army and Royal Air Force personnel and Gareth will spend six months with the Forces community, from the time the battalion is deployed, until their homecoming parade and the big final performances.
During his time with the battalion families Gareth will embed himself into life on the base.
Many military wives have spoken of feeling overlooked. They desperately want a voice to express themselves, and this is an opportunity for those left behind in the UK to come together – without the boundaries of age, rank or background. Can Gareth unite the wives – and the base – through the power of song?
Gareth Malone says: "This is a very different kind of challenge for me. These women do an important job – keeping the minds, bodies and souls of their military partners going while they are away – and whatever your feelings about conflict, these women are dealing with the consequences of it on a daily basis. I want to lift their spirits and give them the voice they want, but we'll be making music under some very emotional circumstances."
Charlotte Moore, Commissioning Editor for Documentaries, says: "The Choir continues to be an inspiring series – loved by the BBC Two audience and recognised for its award-winning approach – and it demonstrates the true depth and variety of successful documentaries on the channel.
"We're thrilled to have Gareth back on BBC Two taking on a new and particularly emotive project."
Gareth first took his work as an inspirational choirmaster on to television screens in December 2006 with the first series of The Choir, with astounding success.
The strand has since won two BAFTAs, an RTS Award and a Broadcasting Press Guild award.
The Choir: Military Families has been commissioned by Charlotte Moore, Commissioning Editor for Documentaries, and Emma Willis is the Commissioning Executive Producer for the BBC.
The 3 x 60-minutes series is made by Twenty Twenty. The Executive Producer there is Lucy Hillman and the Series Producer is Stephen Finnegan.
The first series of The Choir, broadcast in 2006, won a BAFTA. The series saw Gareth take on the challenge of bringing music into the lives of students who had never sung before and ultimately taking them to compete with the very best in the World Choir Games in China.
The second series, The Choir: Boys Don't Sing, broadcast in 2008, resulted in a second BAFTA and an RTS Award.
Gareth's third series, The Choir: Unsung Town, broadcast in 2009, won the Broadcasting Press Guild award for Best Factual Programme.
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