We’ll be singing the services at Winchester on Saturday 29th – Sunday 30th October. We’ve just had the second of our rehearsals and the music is all sounding lovely. As well as plenty of English music in the fine Anglican tradition (Sumsion in G, Howells’ Jubilate etc) we’re enjoying learning a new piece for us, Jonathan Dove’s ‘Seek Him that Maketh the Seven Stars’ – beautiful and ‘moderately challenging’, as it says on the back of the score!
We’ll also be singing Andrew Carter’s ‘Wakefield Service’ which we sang at Westminster Abbey a few years ago. Another wonderful 20th century piece, one that doesn’t get a lot of outings, for some reason. Also we’ll of course have Nick’s responses and some lovely psalm chants. I think we do a good job of the psalms, and we always sing some of them a cappella which I think adds to the mystery.
It’s great to have our organist Clive Osgood with us too!
Saturday 29th October, 5.30pm Evensong:
Responses: Houghton (throughout the weekend)
Canticles: Sumsion in G
Anthem: Weelkes, When David heard (hear a snippet of us singing this here)
Sunday 30th October
Jubilate: Howells, Collegium Regale
Anthem: Victoria, O quam gloriosum
11am Sung Eucharist:
Setting: Darke in F
Motet: Bairstow, Let all mortal flesh keep silence
Canticles: Carter, Wakefield Service
Anthem: Dove, Seek him that maketh the seven stars
It took a bit of negotiation with the Minor Canons (who decide on the music at the Abbey) but we are finally there. The music has been sent out to singers and we have a week and a half until our first rehearsal. Westminster Abbey ask visiting choirs to sing the same Introit for each service. That suits us fine, as by the time we’ve sung it for the fifth time on Sunday evening we’ve usually got it down mighty fine. Last time I remember we sang ‘Lord for thy tender mercies’ sake’ (Farrant) and it felt gorgeous. This time, however, our first and second choices were rejected as being either unseasonal or too sombre. So we agreed on Tallis ‘O Nata Lux’. A beautiful and clean opening for each service. Another piece which ended up being vetoed was the Andrew Carter ‘Wakefield Service’, a great shame as we loved singing it there last time… however, we’re looking forward to singing the glorious ‘Faire is the Heaven’ by Harris, at Saturday Evensong. This will probably be the title of our September concert in Lewes, as we’ll be singing it there too.
The Lewes Singers’ first outing is this Sunday 11thMay when we’ll be the choir at St Michael’s in Lewes for a special afternoon Healing Service – it will be a combination of Evensong and Compline.
We’ll be singing the Wood in D Magnificat, Brahms’ Geistliches Lied, and Stanford Beati Quorum Via, all lovely. There will also be two psalms.
Actually it’s a small subset of the Lewes Singers – just 9 of us, with Nick on organ but joining us for the Stanford which is unaccompanied. Andrew Robinson will conduct when Nick’s off at the organ. Yay! Looking forward to it.
We’ve already got the hire music on order from the Library as we have our first (of three) rehearsals for the September concert in early June, so getting excited about that and I’m already thinking of an idea for the poster!
If you’re in Lewes, do come on Sunday – 3.30pm at S Michael’s.