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2019: Has Your Family Got Soul?

At bOing! 2019, we got the funk (gotta have that funk). But has your family got soul?

Of course it has! This summer, we’re inviting the whole family to sing some Motown classics in our group singing workshop: This Family Got Soul! We welcome all singers, all crooners, and all just-about-carrying-a-tune-ers for dancing, boogieing, and all-round relaxed good fun for those aged five to eighty-five.

We asked Stephen Deazley, the composer, educator and artistic director behind Love Music what to expect from the workshop…

‘I love this project – especially the opportunity to bring three or more generations together…. the idea of grandparents showing their grandchildren how to get their groove on, and vice versa, fills me with delight!

Lots of the songs, of course, will be familiar to older ears, but we’ll be learning it fresh altogether, in new arrangements, and singing and moving as one giant ad-hoc family fuelled choir.

Our cultural landscapes are so marginalised across the generations, and with very personalised screen-based entertainment taking a firm grip on our collective habits, they’re getting more separated day by day. We have to work harder these days at building strong creative bonded communities, and if you can do this through singing, well, why wouldn’t you?’

So if learning and singing classic works by icons like Sister Sledge, Bill Withers, Stevie Wonder, Nina Simone, and Bob Marley sounds like your kind of party, get ready! And get those dancing shoes on. 

More about Stephen…

Stephen Deazley is artistic director and co-founder of Love Music. Recent appearances include at BBC Proms in the Park, and at the Commonwealth Games in Glasgow, where he curated and co-presented a community singing event for 40,000 singers for Big Big Sing.

His music has been premiered at the Royal Festival Hall and Royal Albert Hall, at Bath International Music Festival and in Scotland at Edinburgh’s Usher Hall and Glasgow’s City Halls. He has won national awards for his composition work in a community setting.


Deazley is quite simply a visionary… he makes real, challenging art with the children who are lucky enough to work with him
The Sunday Times