Christmas dates with plenty of nostalgia from The Spinettes

The Spinettes
The Spinettes

A toe-tapping trio along with West End performer Matthew Goodgame will be performing shows across West and East Sussex and Hampshire in a bid to raise money for the Alzheimer’s Society.

The Spinettes are a vintage-inspired trio from London’s West End performing songs from the 1940s to 1960s who decided to raise money for the charity following personal experience with dementia.

Melanie Cripps, co-founder of The Spinettes, said: “Raising money for this charity is really important to us. Matthew’s mum lost her battle with this terrible disease at just 60 years old. She lived with it for almost six years, and in the end there was nothing more anyone could do for her. Losing someone you love and watching them slowly deteriorate is just heart-breaking and the fact that there is no cure is just frustrating.

“We know that the power of song and dance can release memories to so many people but especially with those with dementia. In our experience, our shows bring families together along with local communities and create the most wonderful atmosphere. We now have a huge village hall following with people from four to 94-years-old.”

Concerts coming up include: December 4 – Angmering Village Hall; and December 23 – Boxgrove Village Hall.

Melanie added: “This show is all about bringing the community together for an evening of song and dance. Community spirit played such a huge part especially in the 1940s and 1950s, and we’ve found that this is a perfect event to recreate that atmosphere.”

For Matthew, it’s all the latest chapter in a journey that began when he won Musicality a dozen years ago: “That got me into the industry. I had trained as a primary-school teacher, and I ended up winning the competition. I was doing the sports clubs and drama clubs and all that sort of thing at school, and I used to go to dance clubs as a social thing, and friends just suggested I should enter the competition. I won, and we had the chance to perform for one night in Chicago at the Adelphi on the Strand. We performed to a full audience, and there were 4.5 million viewers for the live broadcast. It was the first one of its kind for that type of show.”

Since when, he hasn’t looked back: “After that I went back to teaching for a while, but then I decided that while I can still dance and move around I might as well try to fulfil the dream. I went on a cruise ship for seven months to get some experience and then came back and went into this full-time. I have been lucky. I work hard, and I am always listening and learning, but I have had some great jobs.”

Tickets £10 adults; £5 children on thespinettes@hotmail.com or 07515552491.

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