The dedicated Fascinating Rhythm Music Team work hard under the stewardship of our Musical Director, Jo Thorn.
Jo is always striving for musical excellence and we aim to challenge, encourage, train, support and develop each chorus member in vocal and performance skills. We look for and promote commitment, passion, energy, fellowship and the love of singing to create a sense of pride, belonging, achievement and fulfilment.
Our Section Leaders
Ali Jack (Tenor) Ali was the founder and first Chorus leader of Fascinating Rhythm. She sings with Gold Medal winning quartet, Havoc. “I’ve been singing for as long as I can remember, but I didn’t discover barbershop until 1986, and I started my barbershop ‘career’ singing baritone before moving to the tenors. It didn’t take long for the barbershop ‘bug’ to take over and with four friends, I decided to start our own chorus – Fascinating Rhythm was formed under the name ‘Rainbow’. Time flies by when you are having fun and it’s amazing to think that from only five of us meeting in a small back room at the local pub that our numbers have grown, and are still growing.”
Karen Mellalieu (Lead) “I joined FR in 1998 – to support a friend who didn’t want to come along on her own. She left a few years later and I’ve been here ever since! Like many other members of the chorus I’ve been involved with music pretty much constantly since I was young. Throughout my childhood and teens I sang in the school choir and later played in the school orchestra. The orchestra was rubbish but the choir was a good one and sparked my passion for singing harmonies. It’s now my privilege to encourage the ‘Diva’ out of our excellent Lead section.”
Karen Lillywhite (Baritone): “Singing has always been a central part of my life but I only discovered Barbershop when I came to Bristol in 2014 ,to study for my music degree and joined TUBBS (The University of Bristol Barbershop Singers), participating in as many groups as I could! After I graduated in 2017, I wanted to continue singing and learning about Barbershop- A friend encouraged me to accompany her to FR and the rest, as they say, is history! Singing in ensembles has always given me somewhere ” to fit in “, in this world and I’ve definitely found my place as a baritone- I couldn’t be happier to be leading this crazy section and making great music together.”
Brenda Roberts (Bass): “I was never that keen on school but I have one thing for which I am extremely grateful to them for – my love of singing! Having sung Lead & weird & wonderful Baritone, I’m now happily settled in Bass and have thoroughly enjoyed singing this part in a quartet called Dilemma with three friends from FR. I am really proud to be part of such a fantastic chorus.”
The team are supported by Wendy Howse (Choreographer and Assistant MD):
“I love singing and performing – it’s the best hobby ever! I fell into Barbershop when I attended an FR Learn to Sing course and have never looked back. As joint-choreographer with Jo, I get to put my dance skills to use and really enjoy seeing the Chorus present themselves expressively and confidently.”
We also enjoy the benefits of various external coaches throughout the year, in particular Sally McLean and Liz Garnett.