Newsletter February 2012

Festival Chorus Newsletter
February 2012
Rehearsals are well under way for our next concert. The Festival Chorus prides itself on taking challenges. Our last concert saw us performing music that might be expected from the mainstream of the choral repertoire. Our next concert on the 24th March sees us up to date with works all composed in the 21st century; not just modern, but contemporary. However, they are all works, that, though individual in approach, look for inspiration to church liturgy as choral composers have done through the ages. Since we will be performing just before Easter, it is perhaps appropriate to include a Requiem Mass, in this case composed by Bob Chilcott. This only received its first performance in 2010 and at the time of writing is still to appear as a recording. A CD will be released by Hyperion the week after our performance, sung by Wells Cathedral Choir. The same choir has also recorded another of the other pieces in our programme – the Missa Brevis by Jonathan Dove. This is exactly what it says – the Short Mass – a setting of the elements which are always included in any mass; the Kyrie, Gloria, Sanctus and Agnus Dei. Composers from Palestrina on have looked to set these texts. The same is true of our final piece, Magnificat by Cecilia McDowall. The Magnificat is so called from the opening words “Magnificat anima mea Dominum” – My soul doth magnify the Lord. Taken from the Gospel of St Luke they are the words sung by Mary when she visited her cousin Elizabeth who was also expecting a divinely foretold baby, John the Baptist. In Church liturgy, the Magnificat is sung at Vespers (Roman Catholic Church) or Evensong (the evening service) in the Anglican tradition; again an appropriate choice for this season in the Church calendar. The words of all these compositions may have the weight of tradition behind them, but their settings on this occasion ensure that they belong very much to the present. Our audience is in for a treat.


Saturday Rehearsal – 10th March – St Mary’s, Balham High Road SW12. 10.00am – 1.00pm
Our final two Monday rehearsals – 12th March and 19th March will be in St Luke’s Ramsden Road, SW12 8.oopm
Party – the post concert party will be held at 3 Thurleigh Avenue, SW12. All choir members are welcome – and do bring family and friends. £5.00 for a glass of wine and food  – and an enjoyable atmosphere. We are very grateful to Lesley Connors who will be our host.
This term:
Concert – Saturday 24th March, 7.30pm St Luke’s Church, Ramsden Road SW12 . This concert is part of St Luke’s Music Society Season 2011/12.
Summer 2012
Rehearsals start Monday 16th April
Concert: Saturday 7th July, 7.30pm St Luke’s Church, Ramsden Road SW12
Saturday Rehearsals 19th May and 23rd June, St Mary’s Church, Balham High Road SW12
Purcell: Dido and Aeneas
AGM : Monday 9th July 2013 8.00pm
Winter 2012
Rehearsals start Monday 3rd September
Concert: Saturday 24th November, St Luke’s Church, Ramsden Road Sw12
Saturday Rehearsals 6th October and 10th November, St Mary’s Church, Balham High Road SW12
Elgar: Dream of Gerontius
Saturday 3rd March -. St Mary’s Church, Balham High Road, SW12, 7.30-9pm  Launching the Chancel restoration project with choral music based on the 9 Chancel mosaics (conductor David Fawcett, Free.
Saturday 3rd March – Cadogan Hall, Sloane Terrace SW1X 9DQ – 7.30pm  City of London Sinfonia – Conquering the Antarctic. Programme includes world premiere Seventy Degrees below zero by Cecilia McDowell
Saturday 17th March – Platinum Choral Workshop – Faure Requiem – St Mary’s Church, Battersea 10.00am – 17.00pm
Sunday 18th March – Cadogan Hall, Sloane Terrace SW1X 9DQ – 7,30pm Skolia Choir – Taverner, Britten, Blackford
Saturday 31st March – Royal Festival Hall, Southbank SE1 8XX  –  7.30pm. Vasari Singers – African Sanctus (Fanshawe)
Saturday 28th April – St Luke’s Church, Ramsden Road SW12  – 7.30pm – St Luke’s Music Society – Stacey Kent

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