Katy Wright

Deputy Editor, Classical Music

Saint Cecilia Singers announce French-themed Christmas concert

10:34, 21st November 2017

The Saint Cecilia Singers’ Christmas concert will take place at 7pm on 16 December at Gloucester Cathedral.

This year, the Singers will present a French-themed concert with music spanning four centuries.

Highlights include the ‘Shepherd’s Farewell’ from Berlioz’s L’enfance du Christ and an arrangement of the traditional Coventry Carol by the late Denys Darlow, former director of music at St George’s Hanover Square and founder of the London Handel Festival. His daughter Camilla, a member of the Saint Cecilia Singers, will sing the soprano solo.

The choir will be accompanied by Gloucester Cathedral organ scholar George Gillow, who will perform four solo organ noëls by Pierre Dandrieu, Claude Balbastre and Nicolas-Antoine Lebègue.

The Saint Cecilia Singers’ musical director Jonathan Hope said: ‘The programme is based around 18th-century French organ noels, which will show off the wonderful Continental sound of the Gloucester Cathedral organ. Some of these charming, folk-style tunes will be carols familiar to our audience already. Into the mix I have added some Berlioz and some lush, jazzy harmonies by the 20th-century composer Pierre Villette.

‘Together with some favourite congregational carols and seasonal readings, we hope to send the audience home full of festive cheer.’

The concert will start at 7pm. Tickets cost £15, with children under 18 free.



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