Welcome! Andover Museum Loft Singers are a community choir from Andover, UK.

We sing unaccompanied harmony arrangements of folk music, local music from Hampshire and from the rest of the UK and other countries and continents. Want to join this choir?  Contact us

News of forthcoming concerts

Overton Sheep Fair

Saturday 20th July

AMLS will be performing on Stage 1 at 2:15 pm

Your continuing support and dedication to the Loft Singers is greatly appreciated. It would be really great to see you at any or all of these events, and if you can spread the word, we are now back to active performing again we would be delighted to handle any enquiries.

The Lights Concert in March

Andover Museum Loft Singers' Concert at The Lights in March was a great success, with almost a sell-out audience enjoying a packed evening of live music. Unfortunately Guinea Lane were unable to perform due to illness, but three short sets from the choir and sets from Keltyke, Jacamanda and Mad Magdalen, three different bands, all with AMLS members, kept everyone well entertained.

The video below is a compilation of the 3 choir sets for you to enjoy.



Members of the Loft Singers feature in Paul Sartin tribute at Sidmouth

Members of the Andover Museum Loft Singers, attending the Sidmouth Folk Festival, were surprised and deeply honoured to be invited onto the stage for the finale of the Paul Sartin Tribute concert. The choir joined Jackie Oates, Jon Wilks, Saul Rose and Joe Sartin in a tearful rendition of If I Was a Blackbird.

The choir takes to the stage just after 1 h 57 minutes in the following video, generously shared by Folkscape.


Loft Singers appoint Zack Stephens as Musical Director

Andover Museum Loft Singers are delighted to announce the appointment of Zack Stephens as our new Musical Director.

This follows a comprehensive selection process in which we auditioned several excellent candidates, and we hope to work with all of them as associate conductors in the future.

The choir, interview panel, and committee were united in admiration of Zack's enthusiasm and outstanding musical ability. We are greatly looking forward to commencing rehearsals with Zack after Easter.

Zack Stephens portrait

Zack is a professional violinist, violin teacher, and music teacher based in Andover. He has studied and worked alongside a great number of the world's best musicians, orchestras, and academics, graduating with a BMus with Honours from the Royal Birmingham Conservatoire in Violin Performance.

Zack’s musical journey began at age 10 with Hampshire Music Service and he was quickly recognised to have outstanding potential, resulting in a Hampshire Music Hub Scholar Award. By the time he was 16 an additional scholarship had been awarded to study Music at Queen Mary’s College, Basingstoke. As a student at Queen Mary’s, Zack set about creating a lasting impact on the Music Department by setting up a String Orchestra, running numerous chamber music projects, as well as lecturing performance classes and seminars. All achieved on top of a full academic timetable. Because of these efforts he was awarded an Outstanding Contribution Award by the principal and was subsequently invited to become an honorary member of staff, taking up the role of Musician in Residence. Here he taught both performance and academic studies on the A level music course.

Following his time at Queen Mary's, Zack accepted an offer to study Violin Performance at The Royal Birmingham Conservatoire with an Excellence Scholarship. This is where he obtained a BMus (Hons) degree under the tutelage of Head of Violin Nathaniel Vallois and Manchester Camerata Concertmaster Caroline Pether. Whilst in Birmingham, Zack took several modules in Advanced Pedagogy and teaching, and also dedicated significant amounts of time to the researching of Pedagogical Methods.

Zack has an active role as a performing musician, regularly giving concerts and recitals as a soloist, and with chamber groups and orchestras.

A Concert for Paul

The choir was honoured to be invited by Whitchurch Folk Club, to perform at A Concert for Paul, a mini-festival celebrating the music and folk passions of our late, much-missed, musical director, Paul Sartin. The event was held on 22nd October, in the church and grounds of All Hallows, Whitchurch, Hampshire, and was open to the public. We performed three songs arranged by Paul: Wild Rover, Acre of Land and Love is All Around.

Dave Allen was there to capture our performances on video.

Voces Festival 2022

The Andover Museum Loft Singers will go ahead with our performance at this year's Festival Voces supporting Quimantu at St Paul's Church, Covent Garden on November 5th. We'll be singing a set of traditional songs arranged for three- or four-part unaccompanied harmony.

In the second half of the concert the Anglo-Chilean group Quimantu will take to the stage for a vibrant virtuoso set of Latin American and European music and songs. With its line-up of talented musicians, Mauricio Venegas-Astorga’s band has quite deservedly gained an important reputation as one of the best, most creative and sophisticated groups of its type, performing with integrity, passion, beauty and great aesthetic care. The beautiful tone and phrasing of Laura Venegas-Rojas on lead vocals is brilliantly complemented by the musical expression of the group. They will be joined by guest bass player the remarkable Jorge Campos from Chile (Congreso, Fulano, Santiago del Nuevo Extremo).

The concert will include a short ceremony to award Roger Watson a Gold Badge from the English Folk Dance and Song Society for his life-time contribution to the English folk music scene.

The concert is presented as part of the Voces Festival, a festival of music and poetry celebrating Chilean & Latin American culture in the UK.

Visit www.voceschilenas.com for the full festival programme and tickets.

Misa de los Mineros (The Miners' Mass)

Our major performance work in 2021 was Misa de los Mineros (The Miners' Mass). More than 20 years since they first worked together, choir members collaborated with renowned Chilean composer / performer Mauricio Venegas-Astorga in a symphonic performance of his Latin-American mass, which was staged  in Whitchurch and London in November.

Mauricio Venegas-Astorga arrived the UK in 1977 as a refugee from the Pinochet regime. “I was lucky to escape with my life. England gave me sanctuary. I feel really happy to call England my second homeland.” Living initially in Exeter, Mauricio quickly tapped into the local traditional music scene, and it motivated him to develop his own talents as a performer, playing guitar and charango, a small Andean stringed instrument of the lute family, and making music inspired by his Latin American folk tradition. He is proud that his performances and compositions have featured in numerous films and TV programmes, and his band, Quimantu, gained a reputation as one of the best, most creative and sophisticated groups on the World Music scene.

Read more about the background to this fabulous collaboration in the article published by the Andover Advertiser.

Sing Out!

Sing Out! is the 2nd Covid-19 lockdown video project from Andover Museum Loft Singers. The song was written by the late Sarah Morgan, a former conductor of the choir, who wrote the lyrics and set them to the shape note tune "Russia" composed by Daniel Read. Here it is sung by members of the choir past and present, some on video others just on audio directed by Paul Sartin and edited by Matt Williams.

Lockdown Video Project with The Sheepstealers

The Sheepstealers invited the Andover Museum Loft Singers to join them to sing an original new song written by Rob Bartholomew and Pete Uglow.  Although The Sheepstealers started the project earlier this year, due to Covid-19 the recordings have been made by all the individual performers at home and edited together to create this video.  We hope you enjoy this performance, the video has been uploaded at Full HD resolution so to enjoy the full impact select "1080pHD" in settings.

Discover more of The Sheepstealers on FaceBook

Andover Museum Loft Singers in LockDown

You may have wondered what Andover Museum Loft Singers have been doing during lockdown when the usual Thursday night reheasals in the Museum Loftroom are cancelled.  Here we are, 25 of us enjoying a Zoom session on Thursday 23rd April 2020 under the direction of Paul Sartin which ended with us all singing Hal an Tow on St George's Day!

Her Salisbury Story - Salisbury Guildhall

Andover Museum Loft Singers in Salisbury Guildhall on Sunday 8th March 2020 where we performed at 11.45am supporting the Her Salisbury Story event on International Women's Day.

Test Valley Arts Foundation Grant

We are delighted to announce with thanks that we have been awarded a grant by the Test Valley Arts Foundation in support of our forthcoming Raise Your Voice – Again singing workshop on the 21st March. A limited number of places are still available.

Solstice Walk - 22nd December 2019

Choir members, friends and relatives – a total of 37 individuals attended the annual Solstice Walk from Whitchurch to the White Hart, Stoke on the 22nd December.  The weather was kind, no rain, very wet underfoot but worth the effort to join the crowd gathered for carol singing and the Mummers play.  A collection raised £102.63 in support of the Countess of Brecknock Hospice.  Thanks to all but especially Steve and Marion for their organising the event.    Mic Laird

Charity Carol Singing - 12th December 2019

We would like to thank the patrons of The White Hart, Bridge Street, The Redbridge, Wetherspoons and The Lardicake for their generous donations which enabled us to present £178.02 to the Andover Crisis Centre as result of our carol singing.    Mic Laird

Living By The Sea - Sidmouth and Whitby Folk Festivals August 2019

AMLS choir members were invited by their Musical Director Paul Sartin to join him and his band Faustus at two of the summer's most prestigious Folk Festivals. Combining with a choir from the English Folk Dance and Song Society, and singing friends from Sidmouth and Whitby respectively, we were the chorus in a show of words, music and stories, entitled Living By The Sea. The show was written by storyteller Matthew Crampton, and Musical Direction was by Paul Sartin. Both Sidmouth and Whitby performances were enthusiastically received by festival goers.       Photographs: Barry Carter and Richard Gearey

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Andover Shilling Fair - 11th August 2019

Each year in August, Andover High Street comes to life at Andover Shilling Fair celebrating the town’s Georgian heritage. The Georgian streets light up with a variety street performers, stalls, rides, horse drawn carriages and period costume, This year was no exception and Andover Museum Loft Singers entered into the festivities entertaining the crowds singing a varied set of songs under the direction of Paul Sartin.

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Sarah Morgan Memorial Concert - 30th June 2019

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We had a wonderful afternoon at the Sarah Morgan Memorial Concert in The Guildhall, Winchester.  Along with Alton Community Choir, Petersfield Community Choir, Spotlight Singers, Take Note and Winchester Community Choir, choirs which had been associated with Sarah, we praised her memory in song and helped to promote the Sarah Morgan Foundation.

Andover Rocks 2019 - 6th April 2019

Andover Museum Loft Singers performing in Andover Methodist Church on 6th April 2019 in support of the Andover Rocks project. Andover Rocks is a fundraising music event for music intervention in adult mental health, raising money for the Community Mental Health Team.  (Click image to enlarge)

RedFest 2019 - 6th April 2019

Andover Museum Loft Singers took part in RedFest 2019 in the Parish Hall, Whitchurch on the 6th April 2019.  This event was raising awareness & funds in support of preventing closure of The Red Post as a public house and it eventually becoming a community pub.   (Click image to enlarge)

This Andover Museum Loft Singers promotional video presents the choir performing under the direction of Paul Sartin.

The song excerpts are from:

If I Was A Blackbird - Trad. arr: Paul Sartin

Love Is All Around - Reg Presley arr: Paul Sartin

Miners Lifeguard - Trad. arr: Paul Sartin.

The Bedmaking - Trad. arr: Paul Sartin

Please visit our Sounds page to hear the complete recordings of all these songs.

B-Naturals Workshop – 9th February 2019

54 singers attended a collaborative workshop between the AMLS and the B-Naturals in Whitchurch on Saturday 9th February where a full day of effort saw the teaching and then recording of four songs. All arranged by the B-Naturals they included ‘Oh You Pretty Things – David Bowie; I Am The Walrus – John Lennon; Surfer Girl – Brian Wilson and The American Stranger (a new song for the B-Naturals).

Those that attended this very successful, enjoyable day ranged from far and wide – Alton to Frome and Oxfordshire were finally regaled to a very irreverent version of the Elvis Presley hit Blue Bijou – the tale of an aerial toupee – I Blew By You - which caused much merriment.

Sincere thanks to those that attended and the B-Naturals themselves for making the day so much fun.

Mic Laird – Andover Museum Loft Singers

Stroud Wassail - 12th January 2019

By invitation of the organisers, Andover Museum Loft Singers was the first choir ever to perform at the annual Stroud Wassail on Saturday, 12th January 2019.  We performed a selection of songs from our repertoire in two very different locations - St Laurence Church and outside the Subscription Rooms. Here we are pictured performing in St Laurence Church, accompanied by Paul Sartin and Gill Corbett.

The choir perfomances were well received and a great day was had by all.  For a video please click the link below.  (Click image to enlarge)

Video - The Sheep Under The Snow

Choir Membership - Waiting List Is OPEN

The Andover Museum Loft Singers membership is capped at 40 members owing to limitations imposed by our practice venue, St Andrew's Andover Methodist Church.  If you wish to be placed on the Waiting List please Contact Us