Voice in a Million was founded in 2009 by husband and wife, Robert and Jo Garofalo..

In 2003 the couple had decided to start a family, however due to circumstances, they decided to embark on the route of adoption.

By January 2006, (3 years later) they were still in the adoption system, having gone through a number of setbacks and endless red-tape in the UK, they decided to consider adopting from another country. By chance in February 2006, they were in Tangiers, Morocco; and were invited to visit a small orphanage….it was here that they met a 4 month old boy…a moment that was to change their lives forever.

Almost a year later, with Jo practically having lived in Morocco for most of that time, they finally brought their son home to the UK; and almost a year after that he was officially adopted.Jo and Robert had been in the UK adoption system for more than four years.

A few months after they brought Samuel home, Robert was producing a televised concert with his friend, Rick Wakeman. During the performance, Rick unexpectedly decided to play a piece he had written; and dedicated it to Samuel. This gave Robert the nucleus of an idea to create a musical show that was themed to tell the story of other children less fortunate, the ones that hadn’t found homes.

In 2007, Jo now a full-time mother, decided that she wanted to start teaching youngsters; and formed a small part time musical academy for children, based out of the couple’s film and TV studio in Shepperton Studios.

In 2009, whilst discussing a potential show date for one of the company’s artists at the O2 Arena,  it  became clear that due to the unfortunate demise of Michael Jackson, the arena had 50 dates to fill. Whilst the artist in discussion couldn’t commit to one of those dates, the couple decided that this would be the ideal opportunity to create a show for children based on their original idea, with children taking part. The idea to create a show, which would highlight the plight of children in care around the world; and the issues and problems facing prospective adopters, had been in development for some time; and this seemed like the ideal time to launch it. Within a couple of weeks, Voice in a Million was launched. Five months later, in January 2010, 5,000 children appeared at the O2 Arena in the first ever Voice in a Million Concert.

Since then, there have been arena shows every year and the choir have also released their first studio album called SMILE. In 2010, members of the choir appeared on stage with the legendary supergroup Foreigner, in front of a crowd of 40,000, at the High Voltage Festival in London.

The Choir has now grown from the initial 32 members, to over 80,000. In 2016.

 

Almost 1500 schools have now taken part in VIAM.

 

One of our shows  at the 02 Arena, saw 7,500 children taking part in an amazing performance.

In 2011, in addition to our arena shows, we tried out the format in provincial theatres with a Christmas themed show, ‘The Orphan’s Christmas Wish’. It was so well received in the  two initial theatres, that in 2012, the show is embarking on a 15 date tour, of England, Scotland, Wales, Ireland and N Ireland.

2011, also saw a new addition to the VIAM family, when the couple adopted their second child, a process that was started in 2009, following the launch of Voice in a Million.

2012 also saw us take the arena style shows into other large venues including the legendary Wembley and the Birmingham LG Arena, as well as our first shows in Scotland, Wales, Northern Ireland and Ireland.In 2012 / 2013 we took the show regionally to Blackpool, Croydon, Edinburgh, Stevenage, Bradford, Newcastle, Hull, Hayes & Dartford as well as staging our 4 annual Schools Event at Wembley. In 2014, we staged our fifth annual schools event at Wembley and staged a Christmas spectacle for two nights in December.

We have also expanded Voice in a Million internationally, with schools now taking part from Germany, France and more recently the USA. Our next Arena Spectacular is taking place at Wembley on the 8th and 9th March 2017.

There is also now a new additional show in development, ‘VIAM the Musical’ and we showcased the first song from this new spectacle in March 2015 at our Wembley Schools Event. The musical will be a touring show and primary cast, with opportunities for schools in every region we visit, to take part. We are also staging regional shows in 2016.

So we are an unusual company. We not only stage large shows for children, giving them a fantastic experience of performing in front of thousands…we give the more talented ones a chance to shine; and teach them recording and performance techniques. At the same time, all of the children and youngsters that take part, whether at one of our national events, regional shows , at school with their choir or at home with our online tuition, they all have the chance to join our ‘voice’, to help make a difference to the lives of children less fortunate than themselves.

We continue in our hope to achieve our ultimate goal of staging  ’one million’ voices taking part in a recording.

Of course the ultimate goal would be to eventually get one million voices together in one location. Who knows where that will be..but some supergroups have staged concerts with 2,00,000 or more in the audience, so it’s not entirely impossible. What a show that would be..!! and what a difference those voices could make.