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PopUp Chorus: 'The Best Damn Thing To Do On A Monday Night'

A chorus of teens sings Everybody Hurts by REM. this was another one of Lauren Hodge's chorus projects.
Still from YouTube video

Beginning tonight, a new musical endeavor begins at Motorco Music Hall in Durham. The "PopUp Chorus" is a chance for anyone to be a part of a musical chorus, with no commitment and no auditions.

Grab 3 or your friends, show up, if you have thirty people you can blend right in.

The program organizer is Lauren Hodge. (And yes, that name is familiar, Lauren is married to WUNC Morning Edition host, Eric Hodge.) The chorus will be directed by Seamus Kenney. Kenney says that the ad-hoc chorus will build on the skills of the participants. "If you can sing this harmony, huzzah, huzzah, we'll add a harmony to this. I just love leading people and music."

Kenneysays that he finds that many people love to sing, but often feel that they aren't good enough to be a part of an organized group. So, he often gets his friends to sing together. "I do it at parties pretty randomly. Some people will tell you they love to sing, other people keep it a secret. Hopefully [the PopUp Chorus is] creating a safe opportunity. Grab 3 of your friends, show up, if you have thirty people, you can blend right in."

PopUp Chorus Logo

  Lauren Hodge agrees. She says a chorus builds community. And, for busy adults, the PopUp Chorus is a way for adults to sing without making the usual weekly commitment.

The group will work on two songs each week. The songs will fall into a theme. For example, for the theme of "Buddy Holly", the chorus will sing "Everyday" by Buddy Holly, as well as Weezer's "Buddy Holly."

Other songs will include "Private Eyes" and "Maneater" by Hall & Oats, The Cure's "Just Like Heaven" and "How Soon Is Now" by The Smiths.

Hodge and Kenney plan to record the songs at the end of each evening.

"PopUp Chorus will be the best damn thing do on a Monday night and a great way to blow off steam. It has been scientifically proven that singing in a group relieves stress. Come on out to Motorco and sing a song!" says Kenney.

When: Monday, January 27 at 6:00p.m.

Where: Motorco Music Hall

Suggested Donation: $5

For more information: - 919-428-1597

This is the result of a similar project, with kids:

And here's another chorus project, also organized by Lauren Hodge. The chorus was recorded at Manifold Recording in Pittsboro:

Carol Jackson has been with WUNC since 2006. As Digital News Editor, she writes stories for, and helps reporters and hosts make digital versions of their radio stories. She is also responsible for sharing stories on social media. Previously, Carol spent eight years with WUNC's nationally syndicated show The Story with Dick Gordon, serving as Managing Editor and Interim Senior Producer.
Phoebe Judge is an award-winning journalist whose work has been featured on a numerous national radio programs. She regularly conducts interviews and anchors WUNC's broadcast of Here & Now. Previously, Phoebe served as producer, reporter and guest host for the nationally distributed public radio program The Story. Earlier in her career, Phoebe reported from the gulf coast of Mississippi. She covered the BP oil spill and the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina for Mississippi Public Broadcasting and National Public Radio. Phoebe's work has won multiple Edward R. Murrow and Associated Press awards. Phoebe was born and raised in Chicago and is graduate of Bennington College and the Salt Institute for Documentary Studies.
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