Miranda Pender

Location: Sherborne, Dorset
About me...

I’m a singer and songwriter who presents entertaining talks based around songs that I’ve written. Raunchy, romantic, heartbreaking, humorous, my subjects range from pretentious garden designers to a 16-year-old boy killed at the Battle of the Somme; from the hero on a cereal packet to that awkward situation where you discover your lover’s name sewn into the back of his underpants…..

I’ve been presenting my musical talks since 2016, and they’re guaranteed to add a bit of fun to your club meeting or event. Even my darker topics have a humorous edge.

Typical comments include: “It was so nice to be able to hear all the words you were singing”, and “We really enjoyed something that was a little bit different”.

I live in Sherborne, Dorset, and am normally prepared to travel throughout Dorset, Somerset and Wiltshire. Please contact me to discuss the options for bookings further afield.

From March to October I am available mornings, afternoons and evenings; November to February, daytime only. I will always consider a short-notice booking to cover a cancellation.

You can listen to my songs on Spotify and watch me perform on YouTube – just search for Miranda Pender.

About my talk/performance...

The standard talks are 45 minutes plus time for questions at the end, but I can make adjustments to suit your requirements.
I play an acoustic guitar, unplugged in small venues, or through an amplifier and with a microphone for larger ones. I can supply the electrical equipment, which is PAT tested, and I hold Public Liability Insurance.

Three of my talks are illustrated, for which I can use my own projector, but the venue will need to supply a screen or suitable blank wall.

I’m no longer accepting bookings specifically for Zoom talks – I find that performing to a little green dot on the computer rather sucks the joy out of the occasion! However, if you book me for a face-to-face talk and a resurgence of Covid-19 forces another lockdown, I will of course honour the booking and be happy to give the talk by Zoom.

Fee:

Miranda’s fee for community groups of up to about 40 people is £40 + 30p per mile travelling expenses. For larger audiences and commercial organisations, please contact her to discuss.

She is normally prepared to travel throughout Dorset, Somerset, and Wiltshire. Please contact her to discuss the options for bookings further afield.

My Contact Details:
Phone:

01935 815497 MOBILE: 07896 354616

Late-Flowering Lyricist

How I overcame a life-threatening illness to reinvent myself as a singer/songwriter.

In the summer of 2008, I was in my early fifties, bumbling along in life, contented but without any strong sense of ambition or purpose. I enjoyed listening to music, but it never occurred to me that I might be able to sing, and I certainly didn’t envisage myself performing solo with a guitar, and playing songs that I’d written! Not only that, but that I’d record my own albums, the first one of which was produced by my teenage hero, the musician and entertainer Richard Digance, who became my friend and mentor.

This is a story of how it may never be too late to change direction; the importance of ‘seizing the moment’; and how, with a bit of determination, you might be able to achieve things you never dreamed of!

Lifting the Lid

The darkly comic aspects of researching family history – stories and songs of love, loss, jealousy, betrayal, revenge…..often funny, sometimes poignant, occasionally shocking.

A forebear deported to Australia for sheep-stealing can, after a couple of hundred years, acquire a certain raffish glamour, but how do you feel if the uncomfortable truth you discover is closer to the present day?

A set of original songs woven around some of the more bizarre stories unearthed from my family history. This talk is illustrated by a slideshow, for which I will need a screen or suitable blank wall.

Two of the stories in this presentation are expanded upon in my talks ‘Censored’ and ‘One Gun: Two Dead’.

Musical Musings

If you enjoyed my introductory talk, ‘Late-Flowering Lyricist’ and would like to hear more!
Shipwrecks, stalkers, spring-cleaning, slogans on camper vans, healthy eating dilemmas, the perils of punting, and the problems of an elderly person whose relatives have decided he’s become a nuisance………

One Gun; Two Dead - The Hastings Murder of 1911

On 13th September 1911, Joseph James, a 56-year-old chemist, walked into the office of Frederick Womersley, manager of the Hastings and East Sussex Building Society, and shot him dead. Edward Chantler, the police officer in charge of the investigation, later used the same revolver to commit suicide.
Joseph was my great-grandfather, and in this talk I tell his bizarre story, and what it’s like to discover you have a murderer in the family.

The talk is accompanied by two of my original songs, and illustrated by a slideshow, which will need a screen or suitable blank wall.

Censored! Norah C James and The Obscenity Trial of 1929

Norah James was my grandfather’s first cousin. She was a prolific and successful author of romantic fiction from the 1930s through to the 1970s, but in 1929 her first novel, Sleeveless Errand, was banned under the Obscene Publications Act.

I tell the story of how Norah went from being a well-brought-up young lady from a respectable family, to making headline news in an obscenity trial, and how ideas of what is and is not acceptable have changed over the years.

The talk is accompanied by two of my original songs, and illustrated by a slideshow, which will need a screen or suitable blank wall.

Miranda Pender Contact Details:
Phone:

01935 815497 MOBILE: 07896 354616

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