The idea of forming a male voice choir in Mevagissey was first talked about in the early ‘50s, but it wasn’t until November 1974 that Gary Mitchell and Geoff Pollard called a dozen or so friends and workmates together at the Congregational Sunday School, to arrange a practice session.
Twenty men turned up at Mitchell’s Boat Yard, Portmellon . Gary divided them into four parts and taught them ‘The Star of Bethlehem’, an old Cornish carol, which they performed a month later in the United Reform Church (now St Andrew's). Mevagissey Male Choir was born.
Over the next few years the Choir gradually built a reputation for the quality of their singing, first locally, then throughout Cornwall and beyond. We have performed in many prestigious venues, including the Royal Albert Hall, as part of the 1,000 Cornish Male Voices; Westminster Abbey; and College Green, at the Houses of Parliament, where we were joined by Brazil’s best-known footballer, Pele.
We are still the only male voice choir to have sung three times at Westminster Abbey. We have sung on board ‘The World’; at Plymouth Theatre Royal, with the Royal Marines; with the Plymouth and Culdrose Military Wives Choirs; and, more locally, at the world-famous Minack Theatre in west Cornwall. And we have performed with Ralph McTell at the Eden Project and with Hayley Westenra, at Truro Cathedral.
We have also travelled extensively abroad, to the USA, Canada, France, Germany, Holland, Ireland, Gibraltar, where we sang in St Michael’s Cave, and Madeira. Our latest trip was to Cyprus in 2016, when we sang at the Curium Amphitheatre.
And, along the way, we have raised tens of thousands of pounds for charities and good causes.
Our willingness and desire to take on new challenges and to embrace new ideas began with the late Harold Miller, our first Musical Director between 1976 and 1994, and has been continued by our current MD Graham Willcocks. Both have not only been innovative, but have been prepared to settle for nothing but the best.