Monday, 24 November 2014


Last Saturdays concert was excellent! (if I do say it myself)

Singing in Bradford Cathedral is always a great experience, and hearing it filled with beautiful music even more of a pleasure. The first half of the concert was relatively simple for the sopranos at least, the Bach Cantata 140 having a steady soprano line while the other parts dart around each other. The choir then got to sit and listen to the marvellous orchestra and the Manchester Baroque Soloists who were excellent (I won't try and name everyone, couldn't if I attempted)

The second half was Rutter's Magnificat, and parts certainly lived up to billing. Soprano soloist Martha Hayward was on top form, and the slower pieces were really beautiful. The audience seemed to enjoy the music very much, and several people commented on how well the choir sang.

All in all, a great success! (Now onward to Christmas!)

Thursday, 13 November 2014

Dashing away with a smoothing iron...

and the crinkly musical moments are smoothed out!

Tuesday's rehearsal went really well and the wobbly moments were sorted out. If I say it myself, we're sounding pretty good. The Chorale is being joined by Martha Hayward and David Heathcote, both of whom are fantastic soloists, so Saturday is shaping up to be a really good concert.

Tickets are available on the door, 7.30 Bradford Cathedral.

Hope to see you there!

Wednesday, 5 November 2014

By George, I think she's got it!

The last few weeks have been rehearsals as usual for the Chorale. With the concert getting ever closer (only just over a week - eek!) we've been concentrating on really ironing out any crinkly bits of the Magnificat and the Bach. It's required some hard work in places, (especially when we're trying to make it sound 'musical' rather than just 'right') but we're getting there - and it should be a really good concert.

Speaking of which, tickets are now available for the reduced price of £10 when bought in advance. Details of how to buy them can be found on the Chorale website

Wednesday, 15 October 2014

Ding, dong, merrily...

Christmas preparations continued this week at choir, with the programme for the December concert being finalised. I'm not giving anything away, but there's a nice mix of traditional Christmas favourites, audience carols, and one or two new ones, including a great arrangement of Ding, Dong Merrily on High.

We're also bombing along with the November concert programme, the Bach is pretty much there, requiring the odd bit of polishing in various places, and the Magnificat is getting to a similar point.

I'm reliably informed that tickets for the November concert (Saturday 15th November, Bradford Cathedral) will be available next week, so information on prices and availability will follow shortly.

Sunday, 5 October 2014

You can get it if you really want ....

but you must try...

For some reason, Tuesday's rehearsal felt like hard work. It wasn't that we were sounding particularly bad, or finding what we were singing harder than usual, it just felt like harder work to sound decent.

That being said, bits of the Magnificat are beginning to sound really good, and the Bach is coming on as well. We're also continuing with preparations for Christmas as the two concerts are so close together.

Another week listening to the pieces on YouTube, I think....

Thursday, 25 September 2014

and the walls came tumbling down...

So the work going on at Northcliffe Church isn't that extreme, but it did mean that we were rehearsing amongst dust sheets and plastic covers on Tuesday night.

With Alex Woodrow temporarily joining us (and I'm constantly in awe of people who can sight-read so brilliantly), Jonathan was able to conduct from the front this week. Rutter's Magnificat is coming on really well, even if we are still occasionally putting 't's in the wrong places. Christmas preparation continues as well, and we've got some lovely carols that I haven't heard before, but really like.

Date for your diaries - the next concert will be on 15th November, at Bradford Cathedral and include the Magnificat, Bach's Cantata 140 and Pergolesi's Salve Regina with the Manchester Baroque Soloists.

Thursday, 11 September 2014

Christmas is coming....

I know it's early, and like most people, I find the thought of Christmas when we're still enjoying the summer incredibly depressing. However, Christmas music is something else entirely.

Normally, so early in term, we're note bashing the music for the next concert, and Christmas doesn't get a look in until afterwards. Because we're a bit more familiar with the pieces for the next concert (a fact I'm still really enjoying), we can have a go at some more festive pieces as well. Which was how we ended up standing round the edges of our rehearsal space singing 'In the bleak midwinter'. Apparently, it's meant to stop us listening to the person we sit next to, and start listening to the sound as a whole, which is a good idea in principle, but sounds really strange when you do it.

Still, plenty of time to practice....

Thursday, 4 September 2014

I'll be seeing you...

....more regularly from now on, I hope.

The Chorale has been sailing some pretty choppy waters recently, following the unexpected departure of our Musical Director. With a tricky concert looming, we were lucky to find someone to steady the ship in the form of Jonathan Eyre, the Assistant Director of Music at Bradford Cathedral.

Haydn's Nelson Mass and Ralph Vaughan William's Dona Nobis Pacem are hard pieces of music for any choir, so there were a few tense moments in the run up to the concert. As ever though, hard work from all parties meant we got there, and the concert went really well.

Jonathan was officially appointed as the Chorale's new Musical Director following official auditions after the concert and term started on Tuesday. The programme for the next concert includes Rutter's Magnificat, which means I'm currently enjoying the slightly smug feeling that comes from vaguely knowing the music at first rehearsal - it's the first time it's ever happened!

If you'd like to join us for a sing, come along to Northcliffe Church, Shipley on Tuesday nights at 7.30. We'd be very pleased to see you - especially men of a Tenor persuasion!