Eurydice: Glasgow Women's Socialist Choir

Eurydice's 20th Anniversary Ceilidh, Saturday 22nd November, Woodside Halls.

Review by Christina Byrne, November, 2008.

In the summer of 1988, Meg McGuinness, Terry Lacey and Maria Gavienas were having a drink in the Scotia bar when they came up with the idea of 'having a sing' one evening a week. They got in touch with Scottish folk singer Gordeanna McCulloch and a few weeks later the Glasgow Socialist Women's choir was born with Gordeanna as leader and coach. There was a famous Glasgow choir by the name of the 'Orpheous' and the girls came up with the name 'Eurydice,' the wife of Orpheous in Greek mythology, the logic being 'well we're no' the Orpheous.' They first appeared in public at Christmas of that year as buskers/carol singers to raise money for CND.

From around twenty girls/women at the first rehearsal in Dowanhill Primary School the choir numbers rose to between fifty and seventy, although in the last few years membership has dropped off slightly.

That didn't stop the existing singers celebrating in style at their ceilidh on Saturday evening. It was a night for meeting up with friends old and new: for renewing links with families and supporters who had attended performances over the years.

The walls of the hall were decked with purple and green, the colours of the Suffragette movement and there was a display of photographs taken at gigs and outings over the last two decades.

Ayrshire ceilidh band The Tattie Howkers had feet tapping, and dances from the sedate St. Bernard's Waltz to the rumbustious Strip the Willow soon had folk up on the floor.

In the second half of the evening The Eurydice girls took centre stage and sang their hearts out to some old favourites. For their finale the audience joined them in an enthusiastic rendition of the Internationale. Later, female percussion group, Partick Drummers performed rhythmic magic that fairly energized the dancers for their next session with the ceilidh band.

As part of the anniversary celebrations, Eurydice has brought out a book that was on sale during the evening but it is also available from the choir .

The group rehearses on Tuesday night at St. Peter's School in Partick and it is always open to new members. Any women who are interested can go along and sing- no auditions.

Partick Drummers meet on Thursday evenings in The Annexe in Partick.

Glasgow City of Music - contact details Eurydice Choir

Anna Burnside - Community Choir Something To Sing About