Lancashire choir break into song in packed high-security airport lounge
A Lancashire choir showed the love with a flashmob-style performance in a packed high-security airport lounge.
Members of the Blackburn People’s Choir, along with singers from the Ordsall acapella group, raised the roof and relieved the tension with renditions of several of their favourite songs to travellers about to board an Air Turkey flight from Istanbul’s Ataturk airport to Manchester.
The choir, including members from Preston, Walton-le-Dale, and across the county launched into song at the gate, where passengers were packed into an non air-conditioned space with standing room only after additional security checks and hand luggage searches.
The ramped-up security is part of new rules implemented by the British government following the rising threat of terrorism, including an attack at Atarturk airport itself in June last year where gunmen armed with automatic weapons and explosive belts staged a simultaneous attack at the international terminal.
Forty-five people were killed and more than 230 were injured.
New rules mean that anyone travelling from Turkey, Lebanon, Jordan, Egypt, Tunisia, and Saudi Arabia must carry any electronic devices - including laptops and e-readers - in their hold luggage rather than hand luggage as is usual for most flights.
The choir, 41 members in total, were at the airport en-route home from Cyprus where they were based in Kyrenia for a week.
Members held a big concert at the Ralf Denktas centre, in aid of two schools for disadvantaged children, also singing at Salamis and Famagusta old city during the day.
They also held a second concert at Kyrenia Amphitheatre in aid of the North Cyprus Cancer Charity Trust.
Choir member, Gwen Sangster, told the Post: “That concert raised over 5,000 Turkish Lira, so over £1,000.
“As you can imagine, we were really pleased with that. In between the two concerts we sang at various locations around Kyrenia and at Kervan Restaurant in Alsancak.
“We had a trip to the Karpaz where we stayed overnight at the Blue Sea Hotel, singing again.
“Then we had a boat trip and sang on the boat and in the sea!”
Gwen added: “Jeff Borodaille, our Musical Director, decided that we would have one last sing before we boarded the flight home.
“We had a fabulous time, made some lovely friends and made some money for charity so it was very worthwhile.”
Their final, off the cuff, performance at Istanbul airport, was welcomed by fellow travellers who burst into applause.
One member of the Ordsall acapella group, Gill James, blogged about some of their events on tour and said: “We sang One Day Like This and listened to the heartfelt applause after Jeff (choir leader) explained the connection with Manchester and why this song was important right now.
“That certainly brought a lump to the throat.”