Carols and festive cheer

The festive season is well and truly upon us and it’s been a very busy week with performances and last-minute rehearsals. Thursday was the big night of the parish carol service where the choir looked and sounded amazing. Men in black tie and ladies in elegant black with touches of red – we enjoyed singing our three chosen pieces and, thanks to Peter Rose and his skills at the sound desk, the choir sounded powerful and beautiful in the specially-decorated church. It was a great evening, with mulled wine and mince pies afterwards. Our last major effort before the Christmas break was on Sunday at mass (yes, I know I’ve worked you really hard this week, you’ve certainly earned a rest!) We sung “a cappella” for the first time ever and it was a resounding success, with a rendition of “Over my Head” a very powerful, spiritual song.
The congregation once again enjoyed hearing you sing enormously and I could see that you were all having a good time as well, which is what it’s all about. Straight after mass I was enormously touched by the Christmas gifts and cards you presented to me and also to Alex. It was incredibly thoughtful and generous of you all and I thank you from the bottom of my heart. Your singing brings us all such joy and is so uplifting. Pat yourselves on the back for a job well done. There will be more in the New Year with our next “outing” at the charity concert on 17th January. We will have the chance to rehearse two or three times after we come back from the Christmas and New Year break. Wishing you and your families a very happy, peaceful and blessed Christmas with all the very best for 2014. Helen X

Carols in the market square

A great time was had by all on Saturday at the Lord Mayor’s fund-raising carols event in Epsom town centre.  You all rose to the occasion magnificently and – dare I say it – you wowed passers-by and stall holders in the square. ChoirSingingMarketPlace4resized

A couple of minor hiccups were swiftly overcome and you gave a rousing performance, particularly the lively and upbeat closing number which had everyone swaying in the market place!  Thank you for braving a cold, Saturday morning and for sparing a chunk of your weekend to come along representing the St Joseph’s Family Choir at this event.  You did yourselves and the parish really proud and helped raise a significant amount of money for three very worthwhile, local charities.

We’re fully into “the season to be jolly” so there will be more singing at the annual St Joseph’s Church carol service on Thursday evening.  I was at the walk-through rehearsal on Sunday afternoon and have two main headlines to report: the organisers have tweaked the final programme and now we shall be singing “The First Noel” first, followed by the “Hallelulah” and finally “Hark the Herald.”  Please could you ensure your music is in that order as it’s now final.  The second bit of news is that for the final carol, “Hark the Herald” the congregation will be singing along from the very start (so not coming in on 2nd verse as per all the others.)  This means therefore that there will be no opportunity for a solo at the beginning.  Hey ho!  Sorry to let our young voices down after all the practising, it is NOT my decision as I’m sure you’ll appreciate.   Could we please arrange to meet a bit earlier at about 6.45 – 7pm (no later than 7 I was told!)  Another reminder for those who weren’t there on Sunday.  Ladies: wear black (top and bottom) and if you want to add a red scarf, pashmina, cardigan, jacket please do for that festive look.  Gentlemen: Black trousers, white shirt, black jacket and tie or dickie bow if you fancy it.  I’m really looking forward to Thursday – you should be too.  You’ve worked INCREDIBLY hard for this and I for one, am so excited to hear you all again.  You’re sounding wonderful.  All the best, Helen