After the success of Doorstep Delight, created collaboratively online through the pandemic, Sinfonia Viva were invited to re-join the Deep Roots Tall Trees choir in a series of creative workshops, in Corby, Northamptonshire. This led to the creation of One Step at a Time, a new song written by Sinfonia Viva and the choir and a music video created by Ruth Pigott. 


Reflecting on the first workshop together in-person, DRTT’s Artistic Director Neil Paris commented:

“There was a lovely energy in the room and it was so pleasing to see so many of the choir getting involved and contributing ideas. And, so exciting to actually have the musicians and instruments in the room at last!” - Neil Paris

Led by Saxophonist and Music Leader Chris Williams, our creative process started with what was important to the choir at this moment in time. In groups, we explored the themes of renewal, of community spirit and our individual journeys. We explored our feelings of returning to a “new normal”, navigating the end of lockdown restrictions and of the difficulty finding moments of joy in the wider context of humanitarian crises, such as Russia invading Ukraine.

We explored the feeling and tone of the song through lyrics and melodies, with the choir unanimously agreeing that they were looking for something upbeat in spirit, with someone reflecting:

“We need positivity; we’ve had enough of the darkness.” - Choir Member


Music recording session Corby

Once the song was written, the choir rehearsed before coming together with an ensemble of musicians from Sinfonia Viva to record on the 22nd May 2022.

Reflecting on the project, a choir member summed it up

“This has been very much about co-creation, which is a testament to the [Viva] musicians and the skill they have at facilitating”. Another choir member added “They [Viva musicians] have made us feel comfortable. They give us such a boost.” - Choir member

On the recording day Neil Paris observed that “the choir and band sounded great together. The combination of professionalism, attention to detail and relaxed enjoyability was spot on.”

Through discussion and artwork, the choir shared their vision for the music video over a Zoom session with artist and puppet-maker, Ruth Pigott and Creative Projects Producer, Hattie Coupe. Choir members donated their favourite teapot or teacup, (a nod to cups of tea being a comforting and welcoming ritual, intrinsic to community choirs) which have been incorporated by the artist in this joyful, stop-motion animation.

The music video is the result of this creative collaboration. 

We hoped to capture this moment in time of Spring 2022; the optimism of the spring and summer months, and the ever-blossoming community spirit of Corby’s treasured Deep Roots Tall Trees choir. 

We think this song beautifully captures a moment in time where we were learning to be together again, learning what it means to collectively heal and recover, One Step at a Time.

This project was co-produced with Sinfonia Viva and Deep Roots Tall Trees and supported by Arts Council England and the Northamptonshire Community Foundation.