Whether it’s a Beatles hit or a 17th Century tune, the songs performed by the Horowhenua Savage Club bring delight to residents of rest homes and retirements villages from Fielding to Waikanae.
The 20 members of the Savage Club play an impressive range of musical instruments including piano, accordion, guitar, bass guitar, banjo, keyboard and drums, and along with their musical and singing performances, they also dabble in comedy skits.
Club Secretary, Ross Nicholson, says age-appropriate music and a good variety of genres is what their clients need and they are pleased to cater for that, especially when they see how much enjoyment it brings.
“It is very gratifying seeing the audience respond to our music,” Ross says.
“Some of our audiences are younger seniors and they sing along with us and tap their feet. The responses from impaired people are not so obvious to us at the front, but their carers tell us that it is very worthwhile for them as well.”
When they’re not out and about in the community performing, Savage Club members host concerts at their hall in Parker Avenue, Levin, which has been the Club’s home since the late 1990s. The Club owns the hall and leases the land from the local council.
“The hall is both our practice location and the place where we put on a public concert once a month, again catering to the elderly of the Horowhenua and wider region.”
While the upkeep and maintenance of the hall is often carried out by members, when it came time for the exterior weatherboards and window/door surrounds to be repainted, the job was deemed one for a professional.
“We need to maintain the hall in order to continue providing our service to the 300 or so people for whom we provide entertainment to throughout the year.”
Because the Club supports community participation and social cohesion – a priority outcome of Eastern and Central Community Trust – ECCT was pleased to support the Club with a grant of $3,000 towards the $8,000 bill of repainting the hall.
“We hope to derive additional income from hiring the hall out to other users, which will help with future maintenance costs.
“We are very grateful for the support ECCT has given us over the years. Our concerts are important to elderly people as it breaks up their day and gives them something to look forward to.”
About Savage Clubs
The Savage Club began as a gentlemen’s club in London in 1857 and spread to have branches around the world. It was essentially a literary society and became an entertainment club where members would put on musical performances and sketches. The Horowhenua Club was established in 1963 and now welcomes female members too.