Baby, we’re just gonna shake

Exciting times at our rehearsal this week, where we got to try out the first arrangement from our new Music Director Chris. And what an arrangement it was. Pop-Up are getting ready to Shake…It…Off!

We’re quite democratic here at Pop-Up, and we spend a whole lot of time chatting about what songs we’d like to do. Taylor Swift proved surprisingly divisive! Half of us are very enthusiastic Swifties, big fans of her songwriting skills, sense of humour and haters-gonna-hate attitude. The other half of us were a little apprehensive about singing such a straight-up pop banger. We’re mostly British and mostly of a certain age. Could we pull off something so… cheerful? Fortunately, Chris is a fan of a huge tune and has every faith in us. So on Tuesday we got ready to get down to this sick beat.

IMG_20150203_140042It’s fortunate that Chris is stuffed with optimism, because well… he needed it. Now, at Pop-Up we’re all pretty great singers, and we threw ourselves into the harmonies with gusto. We were sounding great! It was especially fun to hear our men telling us that they go on too many dates (at least that’s what people say).

But then it was time to tackle the percussion backing to the song. We’re not averse to a bit of clapping at Pop-Up, as you’ll see in our versions of Rolling in the Deep and Hey Ya/Get Lucky. However we’d be the first to admit it takes a bit more practice than the notes. Shake It Off is going to be our biggest challenge yet. Here are our very serious concentration faces while we were learning to tap our bodies in time:

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Luckily Chris wasn’t too alarmed by our initial lack of rhythm, and ever-resourceful, he’s provided us with handy video tutorials to practice our parts. Now we’re all infuriating our friends, families and colleagues with our constant clapping.

It’s always exciting to learn a new piece, and we can’t wait to master Shake It Off. Watch out for us this summer, by which time hopefully we’ll never miss a beat. And we’ll all definitely be converted Swifties.

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