Suzi Digby has formed professional choir ORA to commission and record 100 new pieces from the “new golden age of choral music”. Janet’s new setting of Terra Tremuit will partner the Palestrina original on the forthcoming CD.Photo Nick Rutter Janet Wheeler
As part of Granta Chorale’s concert O Radiant Dawn, Granta Chorale will give the premiere of By Thee I Will Abide. With a Psalm-based text, this begins with a troubled and anguished plea for mercy. Then at the resolution ‘By Thee I will Abide’ a soothing lullaby combines a repeating mantra-like accompaniment with weaving canonic lines over the top. Two canons then combine and gradually subside to a peaceful ending. First performance in Ely Cathedral Lady Chapel April 22nd 2017 The piece will also be performed by Granta Chorale in Saffron Hall on May 14th as part of their programme of Motets from Bach to MacMillan. Both concerts also include Alleluia I Heard a Voice
Conductor Joanna Tomlinson has commissioned this setting of First World War poet Siegfred Sassoon’s most famous poem for Farnham Youth Choir. The poem encompasses a joyful reaction to the end of the war and perhaps too the way that an outbreak of singing in the trenches had banished the horror. The setting develops ideas inspired by the poem’s sudden universal joy and bird imagery and its recurring main theme repeats and dies away to the end with the sustained conviction that “the singing will never be done”. This concert on March 22nd is part of Farnham Festival 2017.
Written for baritone soloist, mixed chorus and orchestra, this is a joyful celebration of singing. Words by Emily Dickinson, Rabindranath Tagore, Sara Teasdale and Abraham Cowley in their differing ways all examine the special powers and attributes of singing. In amongst them comes an energetic dance movement sung entirely to nonsense syllables inspired by Scottish mouth music and vocal exercises. The finale sets a poem by Robert Herrick and builds to a climactic conclusion on the words of the title ‘I Sing and Ever Shall’, a confident assertion for any choir to embrace.
To mark the completion of the rebuilding of the church organ and in celebration of the church’s strong choral tradition, St Michael’s has commissioned this festival Anthem. A text drawn from Dryden and Milton, framed by the Latin Gradual Locus Iste, celebrates the combined power of “the sacred organ’s praise” and “full-voiced choir” to bring “All Heaven before mine eyes”.