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Olly Murs leads Big Christmas Sing at Old Spitalfields Market

Olly MursLast year’s X Factor runner up, and No1 artist, Olly Murs will launch Christian Aid’s Big Christmas Sing at Old Spitalfields Market, London on Wednesday 10th November. Performing alongside this year’s X Factor contestant John Adeleye and Britain’s Got Talent finalist Faryl Smith, the free concert will begin at 5.30pm and aims to get shoppers in the Christmas spirit and promote the charity’s annual singing event.

The Big Christmas Sing invites everyone who loves a good sing-a-long to Christmas hits, past and present, to organise an event and raise money for people living in some of the world’s poorest communities.  People all over the UK are being encouraged to hold a Big Christmas Sing at home, school, work or in a local pub or community hall, with solo or group entries making a small donation to take part. 

Everyone who registers at www.christian-aid.org.uk/bigsing will receive a free fundraising pack containing guidelines, tips on how to hold a Big Christmas Sing, publicity posters and access to downloadable song sheets. People can also register their event at The Big Christmas Sing online interactive map.

Olly, who will also turn on the market’s Christmas lights at the start of the event, said: 'The Big Christmas Sing is a great way to have fun with your friends and get into the festive spirit while raising money for a good cause. I'm really looking forward to a good sing-a-long and to turning on the Christmas lights at Old Spitalfields Market.'

X Factor finalist John Adeleye added: 'Making the X Factor final 12 and singing on live TV to millions of people has changed my life. To appear at The Big Christmas Sing means I can help raise money for people in the world's poorest countries and sing at what looks like being a really fun event.'

Faryl Smith said: 'It has been a whirlwind since Britain's Got Talent ended, but the thing I love most is singing - so I could hardly say no to The Big Christmas Sing, which is all about singing for a charity that does such great work around the world!'

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If you would like further information, please contact Claire Meeghan, Senior PR Officer, Christian Aid on 020 7523 2318 or at cmeeghan@christian-aid.org

Notes to Editors:

1. Christian Aid is an international development agency with a vision – an end to poverty – and it believes that vision can become a reality. It works through partner organisations in around 50 countries for profound change that eradicates the causes of poverty, striving to achieve equality, dignity and freedom for all, regardless of faith or nationality.

2. Funds raised from The Big Christmas Sing will help to support Christian Aid’s work with poor communities in developing countries across Africa, Asia, Latin America and the Caribbean. 

•  £6 could pay for a watering can to help a displaced family, who has fled fighting in the Democratic Republic of Congo, produce more food.
•  £20 could pay for a month’s food and fuel rations for two refugees living in a camp along the Thai-Burma border.
•  £47.50 could provide a health-promotion workshop in Haiti, which allows communities to learn how to protect themselves and their families from disease – vital in the aftermath of a disaster.

3. For more information about the work of Christian Aid visit www.christianaid.org

4. Christian Aid is a member of the ACT Alliance, a global coalition of churches and agencies engaged in development, humanitarian assistance and advocacy. 

5. The Christian Aid press office is on Twitter – follow us at http://twitter.com/caid_newswire

Olly Murs

Olly was runner up in 2009’s X Factor, coming second to Joe McElderry. At his audition, Simon Cowell said it was 'the easiest ‘yes’ I’ve ever given'. On the show's grand finale, he sang ‘Angels’ with Robbie Williams, who later invited the Manchester United fan to play football for his celebrity England team with Ricky Hatton, Ralf Little and Ben Shephard for UNICEF's Soccer Aid at Old Trafford. Olly’s debut album will be released next month. The first single from the album ‘Please Don’t Let Me Go’ reached Number 1 on 5 September this year. The second single ‘Thinking of Me’ will be released on 21 November, ahead of the album. Olly is from Witham, Essex and played semi-professionally for Witham Town F.C. Before auditioning for X Factor, Olly worked as an energy advisor in a call centre.

John Adeleye

John was one of the finalists from this year’s X Factor and was mentored by Louis Walsh in the over 28s category. He has been writing his own material since 2001 and in 2003 won the Unsung Artist of the Year MOBO award for his song, ‘Soul Glo’. In 2004 he toured with UK artist Jamelia. John is from Harlseden, North West London and before auditioning for the X Factor, was working as a care worker at Forrest Court care home in Westminster, helping people with early onset dementia.

Faryl Smith

Faryl is best known for her appearance on Britain’s Got Talent in 2008. She is a teen mezzo-soprano from Kettering, Northamptonshire. After rising to fame in front of 13.8 million viewers on the ITV show, she turned down various record contracts and eventually signed with Universal Classics and Jazz at the end of 2008. Her debut album ‘Faryl’ was released in March 2009 and became the fastest selling solo classical album in British chart history. Her second album ‘Wonderland’ was released in November last year.  Shortly after signing with Universal, Faryl performed at the Royal Albert Hall with Katherine Jenkins. Since then she has performed several times including appearances at the Kenwood Proms, the Serenata festival (Britain’s first ever classical music festival) and at the wedding of Eamonn Holmes and Ruth Langsford.