Vision for the future. Please comment via the contact form.

The Festival Chorus: Artistic Vision: Andrea Brown, 29 June 2015

The Festival Chorus represents a community of people who sing and perform a diverse range of musical work to a high standard.This vision incorporates a number of strands I believe key to The Festival Chorus’ growth:

  • to explore and perform repertoires, whatever they are, to the best of our abilities, taking into account musical style, composer, choir’s own choices
  • a commitment to our local community that we represent, work with, support and develop ways in which the choir feeds into and works alongside the community
  • a commitment to our own musical development, performing in different concert contexts, developing vocal techniques, aural awareness and performance venues
  • a commitment to nurturing new talent and partnerships
  • a sense of fun – we are a social group who sings and socialises together!

Below I present five possible seasons taking into account the above strands considering always:

– Concert Themes

– Commissions

– Performance contexts

– Musicianship and Technical Development

– Community outreach and partnerships

Development is key, here. As the years progress, our concert contexts become more diverse, challenging, presenting robust concerts of differing repertoires with the skills and experience to deliver them.

Season 2015-16

Autumn: Monteverdi Vespers (with authentic instruments)

Spring: Brahms – German Requiem; Beethoven – A Choral Fantasy

Summer: Orff – Carmina Burana; Dove – The Passing of the Year

Season 2016-17

Autumn: 40th anniversary concert with Matthews commission, VWilliams- Serenade to Music, Tallis’ Spem in Alium and Poulenc’s Gloria

Spring: Bach – St John Passion (with authentic instruments)

Summer: tbc Music from the Americas (with piano)

Season 2017-18

Autumn: Mendelssohn – Elijah

Spring: Messiah – Handel (with young conservatoire authentic instruments)

Summer: tbc African Sanctus – Fanshawe (percussion, piano and tape)

Season 2018-19

Autumn: tbc Britten – War Requiem (to coincide with Armistice Day and end of WW1 centenary): in partnership with local children’s choir

Spring: tbc Passio (Arvo Part) @ RFH

Summer: tbc Purcell – Fairy Queen (with OAE)

Season 2019-20

Autumn: tbc in consultation with choir

Spring: tbc in consultation with choir @ Cadogan Hall

Summer: Preparation for Prom in August

Please note that nothing is set in stone – all of the above is based on my experience of the choir having worked with you for six months. A choir’s experience and an MD’s experience changes and develops over time as well as repertoire committees, mission statements, and festivals. I hope, only, to give you a flavour of what may be in store!

Proposed timeline re Artistic Vision and subsequent planning

1 July – 1 August: Choir and Committee consultation period re Artistic Vision

1 August: Cttee decision re Artistic Vision

AB and Chair/Cttee to develop business/operating plan in accordance with vision and strategic aims

1 Oct: AB and Chair to present business/operating plan for Choir consultation

1 Oct – 1 Nov: Choir and Committee consultation re business/operating plan

1 Nov: Cttee decision re Business/Operating plan

Andrea Brown

MD of Festival Chorus


6 Responses to “Vision for the future. Please comment via the contact form.”
  1. Hugh Richards says:

    Is this the contact form?
    Great vision, but we have sung several of these fairly recently,
    I especially like the idea of playing at new venues

  2. Val Shepherd says:

    Wow! This is really ambitious but really exciting too. I’m delighted that Andrea is looking well into the future with us and she wasn’t joking about aiming to sing at a Prom either.

  3. judith roscoe says:

    That is great; I am pleased to read this; the draft future concerts lists also tends to describe some of the vision in perhaps a more tangible way – i.e. we would be expanding our repertoire as we ‘hopefully’ develop/improve

    Best Wishes Judith Roscoe >

  4. andrewpurkis says:

    I like a great deal of this vision. I wonder if we could be even more ambitious about involving schools or other choirs as part of being orientated to our community, or doing joint workshops, perhaps breaking out of our well off middle class identity?

    I also even wonder about a joint performance with another major South London choir, so we can meet and enjoy working with them and make something really special of one of the bigger pieces?

    Is it a bit stodgy to have Elijah followed by Messiah? Is there space for more brilliant modern British composers such as James MacMillan or Taverner?

    These are just questions. I am sure there are lots of good arguments against. Thanks for considering them anyway. I am very happy whatever is confirmed.

    Thanks for consulting us!

    Andrew Purkis.

  5. I think the vision has great depth and scope. I especially like the idea of working with other parts of the community. Wandsworth has an active “Music in Schools’ department that might be a good point of contact. I also like the idea of including some modern composers. I heard some Morten Lauridsen on the radio and thought it was brilliant

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