Choir Fundraising Success
Michaelmas 2015 saw a host of new arrivals to Exeter Choir. Having had a particularly large cohort of leavers in 2014-15, the choir welcomed almost a dozen new singers and Bartosz Thiede, the new Junior Organ Scholar, in October. Since week one the choir was thrown in the deep end by Parry-Wood Organ Scholar Tim Muggeridge (2013, Music), tackling a wide range of repertoire from early polyphony to contemporary compositions. This included a world-premiere of jazz influences canticles and responses by second year music student Remy Oudemans. The highlight of the term had to be the sold out concert of John Rutter’s Requiem, performed with orchestra, alongside works by John Tavener and Symphony no. 40 in G minor by W A Mozart.
Exeter’s Lunchtime Organ Recital Series has continued to attract some very renowned organists and a large and supportive audience. This term, guest recitalists included David Terry (The London Oratory School), Richard Tanner (Rugby School), Carl Jackson (The Chapel Royal, Hampton Court Palace) amongst others. Hilary term will bring more big names to the chapel – a highlight is set to be Ben Lewis-Smith & Julian Colling’s recital which will feature organ duets! Recitals take place in the chapel every Tuesday lunchtime at 1:10pm (week 1-8) with free admission.
The choir made another TV appearance last term in Season 3 of the ITV series Endeavour following on from the famous appearance in 1999’s final episode of Inspector Morse in which the choir sang Fauré’s Requiem.
The events of Michaelmas culminated in the recording of a new Christmas CD. The recording project, conceived and directed by the Senior Organ Scholar, used an innovative way of fundraising by the means of crowdfunding through the Hubbub.net platform. £4300 was raised in total through the generosity of Exeter College students during the ‘Pledge-a-Pound’ week, alumni of the college, families of choir members and members of the public who attended the organ recital series and evensongs. The choir and the organ scholars would like to extend their heartfelt gratitude to all those involved in supporting the project. The new CD will contain Christmas music by 20th and
21st century composers and will include works by Carl Rütti, Ralph Vaughan Williams, Bob Chilcott, and Kenneth Leighton amongst others. It will be available for purchase later in 2016 following our grand launch concert in October, details of which will be advertised.
In Hilary term the choir is looking forward to many exciting events ahead including performing Allegri’s Miserere on Ash Wednesday. In April the choir will appear on BBC Radio 4 longwave as part of the Easter Daily Service broadcasts. This will be followed by services in Westminster Abbey on Sunday 10th April 2016.
Preparations for the 2016 Summer Tour are well under way and members of the choir shall embark on a trip to Malta and Sicily, singing services and concerts and no doubt sampling some of the region’s famous culinary delights!