Charity concert, singing at mass and…..breathe!

Well what a week it’s been, kick-starting the choir’s 2014 programme. Straight into a run of rehearsals on Thursday evenings and Sundays in preparation for the charity concert in aid of “Faith in Action” on Friday 17th January. The choir was taking part in a programme bursting with musical talent including some top-notch, international, classical musicians. The hard work certainly paid off as we took to the stage and opened our set with a powerful a cappella rendition of “Over My Head” followed by a rocking, “Paddy on the Railway” which I’m told had the audience tapping their feet and singing along. In the second half we performed “My Life is in Your Hands” (which, despite the odd, stray clap during the chorus sounded wonderful) and we rounded off with the “Hallelujah” with a debut performance from our soloist Amanda. It was a real pleasure to have Claire Steele and some members of her choir singing with us too.

We sounded really, really good – the harmonies blended well together – and thanks to our resident sound engineer Peter Rose (hip, hip, hooray!) the sound was heard loud and clear in every corner of the church. You all looked like a smart choir and sounded like one too. Your efforts were hugely appreciated by the audience who clapped loudly and cheered at the end of every piece. Well done and a big thank you from me for all your hard work and continued effort. (Trish’s husband Ron managed to get an audio recording of your performance last Friday which I’ll be uploading to the website under “gallery.”)

We continue to grow in size and strength as a choir and that is incredibly satisfying and uplifting all round. I’ve had numerous messages, emails, phone calls from people who attended the concert on Friday, saying in essence “congratulations, you were superb.” I’ll second that! Onwards and upwards as I like to keep saying. There was one day of respite before we were up bright and early to sing at 9.30 mass as it was the third Sunday of the month and therefore “our turn.” Another musical triumph with the congregation and Father Simon clearly enjoying your singing: after mass Father Simon told me, once again, that it was so uplifting and joyous to hear the choir singing at mass so beautifully. Amen to that. I’m very encouraged by your enthusiasm, your dedication and the sheer hard work you put in – it’s fantastic. We’ll take a break from the Thursday evening rehearsals for a couple of months during the cold, winter nights but will continue to meet on Sundays after 9.30 mass in the Westlake Room to run through our liturgical repertoire and prepare for new hymns and choral arrangements to be sung at mass. I’ve had some great suggestions for additional material to add to our repertoire which I am always grateful for – keep those ideas coming and above all, keep up the wonderful singing. Thank you again, I feel truly blessed to be leading such a fabulous group!

Sing, sing, sing

Hello, we’ve got a busy week of singing and then more singing to banish those winter blues. We’ll be performing at Friday’s charity concert in aid of “Faith in Action.” It promises to be a wonderful evening with some superb musicians and singers taking part. We are on in the first half singing “Over my Head” followed by “Paddy on the Railway” and then in the second half we’ll perform “My Life is in Your Hands” and “Hallelujah” as our finale. We’ll be going through everything thoroughly at choir practice on Thursday evening at 20.15 – our last practice before Friday’s concert. I hope to see as many of you as possible there. On Friday we’ll meet at 18.45 at the church for a warm-up and short run-through before the start of the concert at 19.30. Ladies please wear black top and trousers/skirt with optional red accessories. Gentlemen black suit, white shirt and black tie or bow tie please?
To round off the busy weekend we’re singing at 9.30 mass on Sunday 19th (3rd Sunday of 2014 already!) We’ll be singing the same set of hymns/pieces as we did last month with the clapping Gloria and the Halle Halle added on.

Give me joy in my heart (190)
Gloria, gloria in excelsis deo (408 clapping)
Halle halle halle (932 gospel acclamation)
Praise the Lord, oh my soul (offertory)
My Life is in your Hands (communion hymn)
Over my head (second collection/ extra communion hymn)
Walk in the Light (914 recessional)

Looking forward to hearing you all singing again – you’re sounding great!

New Year’s welcome!

Hello and a Happy New Year to you all. I hope you’ve enjoyed your Christmas break. We restart choir rehearsals on Thursday 9th January in the Lady Chapel at 8.15 as we look ahead to our next performance at the Faith in Action concert on 17th January. All material that we know already – here’s what we’ll be performing so you can dust those scores down and refresh your vocal chords with those tunes!

Rule The World
Paddy on the Railway (tiggery-oo-ry-oo-ry-ay!)
Praise the Lord, oh my soul
Over my Head (a cappella)

I’m really looking forward to seeing you all again. Some of Claire Steele’s singers, whom I invited to join us for this concert, will be coming along on Thursday to rehearse with us. It will be a great bunch of voices from our vibrant, little community making beautiful music once again.

Very best wishes.