• The Chiltern Choir


  •   
  • FileName: 2006-06-24.pdf [preview-online]
    • Abstract: The Chiltern ChoirSummer Gala Concert2006Greetings from the ChairA very warm welcome to all of you to our Summer Concert. It is some timesince we sang Carl Orff’s Carmina Burana, an exultant work based on a series of

Download the ebook

The Chiltern Choir
Summer Gala Concert
2006
Greetings from the Chair
A very warm welcome to all of you to our Summer Concert. It is some time
since we sang Carl Orff’s Carmina Burana, an exultant work based on a series of
medieval poems, and we hope that you will get carried along by the rhythmic and
melodic themes that make up this breath-taking piece. We are particularly glad
to welcome the Junior Choir of Watford Grammar School for Girls who will be
joining us for this performance.
The selection of Opera Choruses from Prince Igor, Indomeneo and Nabucco
will be familiar to all of our audience, and we hope will provide a rousing end to our
season.
Details of our next season’s concerts can be found at the back of the
programme. Because December gets so busy with Christmas activities, our main
concert next term will be an Advent concert on Saturday 25th November when
we will be singing the increasingly popular work by Karl Jenkins The Armed Man,
together with Mozart’s Vespers.
Our Christmas concert of carols and poems will be in the early evening on
Saturday 9th December, a time that we hope will appeal to people of all ages.
We look forward to seeing you at these two concerts.
Our next term starts on Tuesday 5th September. We welcome new members,
particularly tenors and basses!
We hope that you all have a warm and enjoyable summer and that we will see
you again in November.
Gillian Pugh 01923 285505
1
This Evening’s Programme
Carmina Burana Carl Orff
Fortuna Imperatix Mundi (Fortune, Empress of the World)
1. Choir O Fortuna (O Fortune)
After an initial acknowledgement of the majesty of Fortune, she is wistfully reproached for
her capriciousness. She allows some to enjoy success and pleasure but inevitably draws
everyone down until they fade away to nothing.
O Fortuna Sors immanis Sors salutis
velut luna et inanis, et virtutis
statu variabilis, rota tu volubilis, michi nunc contraria,
semper crescis status malus, est affectus
aut decrescis; vana salus et defectus
vita detestabilis semper dissolubilis, semper in angaria.
nunc obdurat obumbrata Hac in hora
et tunc curat et velata sine mora
ludo mentis aciem, michi quoque niteris; corde pulsum tangite;
egestatem, nunc per ludum quod per sortem
potestatem dorsum nudum sternit fortem,
dissolvit ut glaciem. fero tui sceleris. mecum omnes plangite!
2. Choir Fortune plango vulnera (I bemoan the wounds of
Fortune)
The sentiments of the first chorus are repeated but this time with increased rancour. Gifts
bestowed earlier are perversely taken away and they who once enjoyed prosperity are
brought low and deprived of glory whilst, simultaneously, others are raised up. Let those now
raised up beware their inevitable fall! (Messrs Lay and Skilling could identify with these
sentiments).
Fortune plango vulnera In Fortune solio Fortune rota volvitur:
stillantibus ocellis, sederam elatus, descendo minoratus;
quod sua michi munera prosperitatis vario alter in altum tollitur;
subtrahit rebellis. flore coronatus; nimis exaltatus
Verum est, quod legitur, quicquid enim florui rex sedet in vertice -
fronte capillata, felix et beatus, caveat ruinam!
sed plerumque sequitur nunc a summo corrui nam sub axe legimus
Occasio calvata. gloria privatus. Hecubam reginam.
I Primo Vere (Spring)
3. Choir Veris leta facies (The merry face of spring)
Winter is vanquished and Springtime presents its cheerful face to the world. The flowers
bloom, the birds sing and gentle breezes waft sweet aromas throughout. A chorus of maidens
gives a hint of pleasures to come. Ah!
2
Veris leta facies Flore fusus gremio Cytharizat cantico
mundo propinatur, Phebus novo more dulcis Philomena,
hiemalis acies risum dat, hac vario flore rident vario
victa iam fugatur, iam stipate flore. prata iam serena,
in vestitu vario Zephyrus nectareo salit cetus avium
Flora principatur, spirans in odore. silve per amena,
nemorum dulcisono Certatim pro bravio chorus promit virgin
que cantu celebratur. curramus in amore. iam gaudia millena.
4. Baritone Omnia sol temperat (The sun warms everything)
The sun is warming everything and Nature is, once again, renewed. Amidst all this regeneration
it is natural that the hearts and souls of men should turn to thoughts of love.
Omnia sol temperat Rerum tanta novitas Ama me fideliter,
purus et subtilis, in solemni vere fidem meam noto:
novo mundo reserat et veris auctoritas de corde totaliter
faciem Aprilis, jubet nos gaudere; et ex mente tota
ad amorem properat vias prebet solitas, sum presentialiter
animus herilis et in tuo vere absens in remota,
et iocundis imperat fides est et probitas quisquis amat taliter,
deus puerilis. tuum retinere. volvitur in rota.
5. Chorus Ecce gratum (Behold, the pleasant spring)
Observe how the long-awaited Spring brings back joy, how the sun brightens everything
and the rigours of winter recede. Summer is imminent and it is a sad soul indeed whose
Cupidinous urges are not inflamed under its influence.
Ecce gratum Iam liquescit Gloriantur
et optatum et decrescit et letantur
Ver reducit gaudia, grando, nix et cetera; in melle dulcedinis,
purpuratum bruma fugit, qui conantur,
floret pratum, et iam sugit ut utantur
Sol serenat omnia. Ver Estatis ubera; premio Cupidinis:
Iamiam cedant tristia! illi mens est misera, simus jussu Cypridis
Estas redit, qui nec vivit, gloriantes
nunc recedit nec lascivit et letantes
Hyemis sevitia. sub Estatis dextera. pares esse Paridis.
Uf dem Anger (On the Greensward)
6. Instrumental Tanz (Dance)
A dance expresses the joyousness of the time of year.
7. Chorus Floret silva nobilis (The woods are burgeoning)
The trees and flowers are flourishing, but the maidens lament the disappearance of their
erstwhile lovers. They have ridden away, reply the men. The maidens exclaim “Who will love me
now?” but the question is left unanswered. This is surely because the men cannot believe their
luck.
3
Floret silva nobilis Floret silva undique,
floribus et foliis. nah min gesellen ist mir we.
Ubi est antiquus Gruonet der walt allenthalben,
meus amicus? wa ist min geselle alse lange?
Hinc equitavit, Der ist geriten hinnen,
eia, quis me amabit? o wi, wer sol mich minnen?
8. Chorus Chramer, gip die varwe mir (Shopkeeper, give me colour)
Having implored the pharmacist to supply beauty aids to make themselves irresistible the
women approach the men with assurances of their worthiness to be loved and their desire to
give pleasure, promising at the same time that the men’s spirits will be ennobled and
honoured by lovemaking. Finally, they thank the world (representing Fortune) for affording so
much joy and promising obedience to it.
Chramer, gip die varwe mir, Minnet, tugentliche man, Wol dir, werit, daz du bist
die min wengel roete, minnecliche frouwen! also freudenriche!
damit ich die jungen man minne tuot iu hoch gemout ich will dir sin undertan
an ir dank der minnenliebe unde lat iuch in hohen eren durch din liebe immer
noete. schouwen sicherliche.
Seht mich an, Seht mich an Seht mich an,
jungen man! jungen man! jungen man!
lat mich iu gevallen! lat mich iu gevallen! lat mich iu gevallen!
9. Chorus Reie (Round dance)
An energetic dance is under way on the sward. Some of the women affect no interest in
the men but others (altos, interestingly) have no truck with such dissembling.
Swaz hie gat umbe, Suzer rosenvarwer munt,
daz sint alles megede, chum un mache mich gesunt
die wellent an man chum un mache mich gesunt,
allen disen sumer gan! suzer rosenvarwer munt.
Chume, chum, geselle min, Swaz hie gat umbe,
ih enbite harte din, daz sint alles megede,
ih enbite harte din, die wellent an man
chume, chum, geselle min. allen disen sumer gan!
10. Chorus Were diu werlt alle min (Were all the world mine)
The thrust of this song is that all would be sacrificed for a time in the arms of the Queen
of England (presumably, Eleanor of Aquitane). Quite why this is scored for both men’s and
women’s voices, Carl Orff only could explain.
Were diu werlt alle min
von deme mere unze an den Rin
des wolt ih mih darben,
daz diu chunegin von Engellant
lege an minen armen.
4
II In Taberna (In the Tavern)
11. Baritone Estuans interius (Burning Inside)
Here we have the familiar pub bore, in his cups, lamenting how nobody understands him
and how fate (Fortune again) has so ill-used him. He has no interest in prudent living or a life
of virtue; he will seek the pleasures of the day.
Estuans interius Feror ego veluti Via lata gradior
ira vehementi sine nauta navis, more iuventutis
in amaritudine ut per vias aeris inplicor et vitiis
loquor mee menti: vaga fertur avis; immemor virtutis,
factus de materia, non me tenent vincula, voluptatis avidus
cinis elementi non me tenet clavis, magis quam salutis,
similis sum folio, quero mihi similes mortuus in anima
de quo ludunt venti. et adiungor pravis. curam gero cutis.
Cum sit enim proprium Mihi cordis gravitas
viro sapienti res videtur gravis;
supra petram ponere iocis est amabilis
sedem fundamenti, dulciorque favis;
stultus ego comparor quicquid Venus imperat,
fluvio labenti, labor est suavis,
sub eodem tramite que nunquam in cordibus
nunquam permanenti. habitat ignavis.
12. Tenor (& male chorus) Cignus ustus cantat (The Roast Swan)
An allegorical account of a once beautiful swan, captured and roasting on a spit then
presented on a plate to hungry diners. This song is a most poignant illustration of the way
Fortune can bring anyone low, however high they might have been.
Olim lacus colueram, Girat, regirat garcifer; Nunc in scutella iaceo,
olim pulcher extiteram, me rogus urit fortiter; et volitare nequeo
dum cignus ego fueram. propinat me nunc dapifer, dentes frendentes video:
Miser, miser! Miser, miser! Miser, miser!
modo niger modo niger modo niger
et ustus fortiter! et ustus fortiter! et ustus fortiter!
13. Baritone Ego sum abbas (I am the abbot)
The baritone plays the part of an abbot who consorts regularly with drinkers. Anyone who
joins him for a drink in the morning will, by evening, have lost all his clothes. He will cry to
Fortune “why have you done this? You have taken away all the pleasures of my life”.
Ego sum abbas Cucaniensis
et consilium meum est cum bibulis, Wafna, wafna!
et in secta Decii voluntas mea est, quid fecisti sors turpassi
et qui mane me quesierit in taberna, Nostre vite gaudia
post vesperam nudus egredietur, abstulisti omnia!
et sic denudatus veste clamabit:
5
14. Male Chorus In taberna quando sumus (When we are in the tavern)
The men are now in the tavern both drinking and gambling to excess. Of the gamblers,
some will win and some will lose but those who win will assuredly spend all their winnings on
drink. Everyone drinks immoderately and immeasurably and ends up destitute. Men who do
not frequent taverns, even though they drink themselves, criticise them. Curse them! May they,
too, be excluded from the book of salvation.
In taberna quando sumus quater pro Christianis cunctis Bibit pauper et egrotus,
non curamus quid sit humus, quinquies pro fidelibus defunctis, bibit exul et ignotus,
sed ad ludum properamus, sexies pro sororibus vanis, bibit puer, bibit canus,
cui semper insudamus. septies pro militibus silvanis. bibit presul et decanus,
Quid agatur in taberna bibit soror, bibit frater,
Octies pro fratribus perversis,
ubi nummus est pincerna, bibit anus, bibit mater,
nonies pro monachis dispersis,
hoc est opus ut queratur, bibit ista, bibit ille,
decies pro navigantibus
si quid loquar, audiatur. bibunt centum, bibunt mille.
undecies pro discordaniibus,
Quidam ludunt, quidam bibunt, duodecies pro penitentibus, Parum sexcente nummate
quidam indiscrete vivunt. tredecies pro iter agentibus. durant, cum immoderate
Sed in ludo qui morantur, Tam pro papa quam pro rege suffice,
ex his quidam denudantur bibunt omnes sine lege. bibunt omnes sine meta.
quidam ibi vestiuntur, Quamvis bibant mente leta,
Bibit hera, bibit herus,
quidam saccis induuntur. sic nos rodunt omnes gentes
bibit miles, bibit clerus,
Ibi nullus timet mortem et sic erimus egentes.
bibit ille, bibit illa,
sed pro Baccho mittunt sortem: Qui nos rodunt confundantur
bibit servis cum ancilla,
et cum iustis non scribantur.
Primo pro nummata vini, bibit velox, bibit piger,
ex hac bibunt libertini; bibit albus, bibit niger,
semel bibunt pro captivis, bibit constans, bibit vagus,
post hec bibunt ter pro vivis, bibit rudis, bibit magnus.
III Cour D'amours (The Course of Love)
15. Soprano Amor volat undique (Cupid flies everywhere)
Love is everywhere. Young men and women are conjoined as nature intended. Any girl who
remains alone experiences a dark night devoid of all pleasure.
Amor volat undique, Siqua sine socio, fit res amarissima.
captus est libidine. caret omni gaudio;
Iuvenes, iuvencule tenet noctis infima
coniunguntur merito. sub intimo
cordis in custodia:
16. Baritone Dies, nox et omnia (Day, night and everything)
The young man feels everything is against him. He is frightened by the chattering of the girls
and implores them not to make fun of him. He tells them that their lovely faces make him weep
with frustration but fears that their hearts are cold towards him. A kiss is all he needs for
reassurance.
6
Dies, nox et omnia O sodales, ludite, Tua pulchra facies
michi sunt contraria; vos qui scitis dicite me fay planszer milies,
virginum colloquia michi mesto parcite, pectus habet glacies.
me fay planszer, grand ey dolur, A remender
oy suvenz suspirer, attamen consulite statim vivus fierem
plu me fay temer. per voster honur. per un baser.
17. Soprano Stetit puella (A girl stood)
A girl stands like a rose-bud, in a red dress. She is totally responsive. Her face and mouth
convey an unmistakeable message.
Stetit puella Stetit puella
rufa tunica; tamquam rosula;
si quis eam tetigit, facie splenduit,
tunica crepuit. os eius fioruit.
Eia. Eia.
18. Baritone & Chorus Circa mea pectora (In my heart)
The baritone sighs for the beauty of this girl whose eyes shine like the rays of the sun and
flashes of lightening. He implores the gods to grant him the privilege of her initiation. The rest
of the gathering bemoan the fact the their lovers are making no advances.
Circa mea pectora Tui lucent oculi Vellet deus, vallent dii
multa sunt suspiria sicut solis radii, quod mente proposui:
de tua pulchritudine, sicut splendor fulguris ut eius virginea
que me ledunt misere. lucem donat tenebris. reserassem vincula.
Manda liet, Manda liet Manda liet,
Manda liet Manda liet, Manda liet,
min geselle min geselle min geselle
chumet niet. chumet niet. chumet niet.
19. Male Chorus Si puer cum puellula (If a boy with a girl)
The men indulge in a little wishful reflection. If a boy and a girl get it together in a little
room, how felicitous is the result. Love becomes dominant and inhibitions are driven away.
Then the fun starts.
Si puer cum puellula pariter e medio
moraretur in cellula, avulso procul tedio,
felix coniunctio. fit ludus ineffabilis
Amore suscrescente membris, lacertis, labii.
20. Chorus Veni, veni, venias (Come, come, O come)
The heightening of passion is evident. Extravagant compliments are thrown around. We’ve
all been there...
Veni, veni, venias Pulchra tibi facies Rosa rubicundior,
Veni, veni, venias, oculorum acies, lilio candidior
ne me mori facias, capillorum series, omnibus formosior,
hyrca, hyrce, nazaza, o quam clara species! semper in te glorior!
hycra, hycre, nazaza,
trillirivos...
7
21. Soprano In truitina (In the balance)
She professes, not very convincingly, to be wavering. Is now the time to yield up her
chastity? She decides that, on balance, it probably is.
In truitina mentis dubia
fluctuant contraria
lascivus amor et pudicitia.collum iugo prebeo:
ad iugum tamen suave transeo.
22. Soloists & Chorus Tempus es iocundum (This is the joyful time)
The baritone and the soprano explain, separately, how each is almost exploding with
desire for first love. Meanwhile, the men explain how patient they have been throughout the
long winter but, now that spring has arrived, lustful feelings are extremely difficult to hold in
check. The women are rendered unhappy by their inhibitions; they confess to their desires
but fear of the unknown constrains them.
Tempus es iocundum, Oh, oh, oh Oh, oh, oh!
o virgines, totus floreo... totus floreo...
modo congaudete
Tempore brumali Veni, domicella,
vos iuvenes.
vir patiens, cum gaudio,
Oh, oh, oh, animo vernali veni, veni, pulchra,
totus floreo lasciviens. iam pereo.
iam amore virginali
Oh, oh, oh, Oh, oh, oh,
totus ardeo,
totus floreo... totus floreo
novus, novus amor
iam amore virginali
est, quo pereo. Mea mecum ludit
totus ardeo,
virginitas,
Mea me confortat novus, novus amor
mea me detrudit
promissio, est, quo pereo.
simplicitas.
mea me deportat
negatio
23. Soprano Dulcissime (Sweetest one)
The girl, at last, gives all.
Dulcissime,...
totam tibi subdo me!
Blanziflor Et Helena (Blanchefleur and Helen)
24. Chorus Ave formosissima (Hail, most beautiful one)
The narrative having run its full course, we celebrate with a hymn to virginal perfection.
Ave formosissima, ave mundi luminar,
gemma pretiosa, ave mundi rosa,
ave decus virginum, Blanziflor et Helena,
virgo gloriosa, Venus generosa!
8
Fortuna Imperatrix Mundi (Fortune, Empress of the World)
25. Chorus O Fortuna (O Fortune)
The proposition set out at the very beginning, that we are all subject to the caprice of
Fortune, is repeated but this time with much more exuberance and considerably less wistfulness
and rancour. Perhaps the peaks of happiness are more than adequate to compensate for the
inevitable fall.
O Fortuna, Sors immanis Sors salutis
velut luna et inanis, et virtutis
statu variabilis, rota tu volubilis, michi nunc contraria,
semper crescis status malus, est affectus
aut decrescis; vana salus et defectus,
vita detestabilis semper dissolubilis, semper in angaria.
nunc obdurat obumbrata Hac in hora
et tunc curat et velata sine mora
ludo mentis aciem, michi quoque niteris; corde pulsum tangite;
egestatem, nunc per ludum quod per sortem
potestatem dorsum nudum sternit fortem,
dissolvit ut glaciem. fero tui sceleris. mecum omnes plangite!
English notes by Jim Darby
INTERVAL
enjoy the refreshments!
Chorus of the Hebrew Slaves (From Nabucco)
Verdi
Catalogue aria (From Don Giovanni)
Mozart Soloist Justin Harmer
Dies Bildnis ist bezaubernd schön (From Die Zauberflöte)
Mozart Soloist David Knight
Voyagers’ Chorus (From Idomeneo)
Mozart Soloist Gwendolen Burton
O Mio Babino Caro (From Gianni Schicchi)
Puccini Soloist Gwendolen Burton
Polovtsian Dances (From Prince Igor)
Borodin Soloist Justin Harmer
9
Programme Notes Michael Mizgailo-Cayton
Carl Orff 1895 – 1982.
Carl Orff began composing songs at the age of 5 and completed his first choral work
(Also Sprach Zarathustra) and opera (Gisei) while still a teenager. He co-founded the
Guntherschule in Munich, an institution aimed at integrating music and movement as well
as exploring the use of voice with percussion instruments. His educational works
emphasised the use of primitive rhythms and ostinato (repeated patterns), a system that
was widely used by schools in Berlin before the war and became the basis of post-war
educational broadcasts for children. His work at the Guntherschule also explored music
and movement which led to new dance creations by leading ballet leaders. He worked at
Munich’s Kammerspiele as Repetiteur and conductor, specialising in theatre rather than
opera.
Carmina Burana translates as ‘Songs of Benediktbeuern’ and is based on a series
of songs and poems dating from the thirteenth century that were most likely handed
down from minstrels and jesters. They cover every facet of life that celebrates the joys
of the senses, of money and the decline of morality. The twenty four songs are divided
into three parts; ‘Spring’, ‘In the Tavern’ and ‘The Court of Love’ with the whole work
opening and closing with the ‘O Fortuna’ chorus which emphasises that we humans are
the powerless playthings of fate.
Alexander Borodin 1833 – 1889.
Borodin was born in Saint Petersburg. As a boy he received a good education, including
piano lessons, but he was eventually to earn a doctorate in medicine at the Medico-
Surgical Academy, and to pursue a career in the decidedly non-musical field of chemistry.
As a result of his work in chemistry, Borodin was not as prolific in writing music as many
of his contemporaries were – hence his own description of himself as a “Sunday
composer”. He died during a festive ball, where he was participating with much vigour
and suddenly collapsed from heart failure.
His music is noted for its strong lyricism and rich harmonies. Along with some influences
from Western composers, as a member of a group of composers known as “The Five”,
his music exudes an undeniably Russian flavour. His passionate music and unusual
harmonies proved to have a lasting influence on the younger French composers Claude
Debussy and Maurice Ravel. His output consisted of two symphonies, two string quartets,
songs, piano music and of course the opera “Prince Igor”.
Giuseppe Verdi 1813 – 1901.
Verdi was the most influential member of the 19th century's Italian School of Opera.
His works are frequently performed in opera houses throughout the world and, transcending
the boundaries of the genre, some of his themes have long since taken root in popular
culture - such as “La donna è mobile” from Rigoletto and “Libiamo ne' lieti calici”
10
from La traviata. Oftentimes scoffed at by the critics (in his lifetime and today) as
catering to the tastes of the common folk, overly simple in chromatic texture and
shamelessly melodramatic, Verdi’s masterpieces dominate the standard repertoire a
century and a half after their composition.
Verdi composed Nabucco following a series of tragedies in his life. His wife and
children died and his second opera was a flop. He recovered from his despair when he
was persuaded to write Nabucco in 1842 and the importance its opening performance
made Verdi famous. Legend has it that it was the words of the famous “Va pensiero”
chorus of the Hebrew slaves which inspired Verdi to begin writing again.
Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart 1756 – 1791.
Mozart is among the most significant and enduringly popular composers of European
classical music. His enormous output includes works that are widely acknowledged as
pinnacles of symphonic, chamber, piano, operatic, and choral music. Many of his works
are part of the standard concert repertory and are widely recognized as masterpieces of
the classical style.
Idomeneo was first performed in Munich on January 29, 1781 when Mozart was 24,
Idomeneo was Mozart's first mature opera seria, and with it he demonstrated his mastery
of orchestral colour, accompanied recitatives and melodic line.
CHANDLERS CROSS
PARADE PHARMACY BOARDING KENNELS
CHORLEYWOOD Only a family
We accept VISA/ACCESS/AMERICAN EXPRESS
concern like ours
We stock a wide range of complementary medicines
can give the
individual &
1 HOMEOPATHY personal
1 HERBAL ARKOCAPS attention that you
1 BACH REMEDIES give your dogs
1 NELSONS + NEW ERA
1 WELEDA
• Individual heated
1 TISSERAND AROMATHERAPY kennels
1 BIOFORCE TINCTURES • Open all year
• Bitches in season
We offer oxygen collection and delivery service. accommodated
We do passport photos in 5 minutes
And you must come and see our wide range of gifts for
all occasions
OPENING HOURS: EVERY WEEKDAY 9–6, 01923 260182
THROUGHOUT LUNCH AND 9–5 ON SATURDAY
DAY OR EVENING
18, Main Parade, Whitelands Avenue, Chorleywood
Tel/Fax 01923 283449
Potten Farm House, Chandlers
Cross, Rickmansworth
11
This Evening’s Performers
Director of Music: Michael Mizgailo-Cayton…
...began his musical career at the age of sixteen as a bandsman in the Grenadier
Guards. After serving almost nine years he went on to study music at the Royal
College of Music in London where he was awarded several prizes for conducting,
accompaniment and improvisation. He was as awarded a studentship supported
by the Worshipful Company of Fishmongers to study as the Post Graduate
Repetiteur for the London School’s Opera at the RCM and at the same time became
the first recipient of the Millennium Organ Scholarship at the Royal Hospital in
Chelsea.
Since leaving the college Michael has enjoyed a varied career as an organ
recitalist, choral director and composer. He made his debut as an organ recitalist
in Westminster Abbey in January 2000 and has since performed all over the
United Kingdom in cathedrals and parish churches. This is Michael’s third season
as Musical Director of the Chiltern Choir and he also holds the position of Director
of Music at St. John’s Wood Church in London where he directs the church’s
critically acclaimed choir. During the course of his career Michael has toured
extensively to Europe, the far East and America and has been involved in several
recordings and broadcasts for the BBC and his compositions are published with
‘Redemptorist Publications’.
Soprano: Gwendolen Burton...
...is a freelance singer based in London. She is in demand as a recitalist and
soprano soloist in the UK and has recently returned from her US debut – a solo
recital in New York, just “off Broadway”. Gwendolen has previously given concerts
in both Israel and Argentina.
Gwendolen’s operatic roles include Belinda (Dido and Aeneas), Ann (The Merry
Wives of Windsor) and Rose (Ruddigore) but she also sings regularly at religious
services and is currently Cantorial Soloist at Finchley Progressive Synagogue.
As well as singing, Gwendolen has a private teaching practice in central
London. In February this year, she enjoyed meeting members and guests of the
Chiltern Choir when she was invited to give voice coaching at the Choir’s annual
Open Day.
Gwendolen has studied at Cambridge, at the London College of Music and
Guildhall School of Music and Drama with Amanda Thane, at Morley College
with Richard Jackson and subsequently with Sally Bradshaw.
She has also learnt a number of languages. In 2003, Gwendolen took part in
an intensive Yiddish language programme at Columbia University, New York,
thanks to a scholarship from the YIVO Institute. She now runs a regular Yiddish
group for residents at Nightingale House, a home for the elderly in South London.
12
Tenor: David Knight…
…studied Music and Business Studies at Roehampton Institute, London and
graduated with a 2:1 degree. He currently studies singing with Nicholas Powell
in London. Before going to University he was a chorister and later a Gentleman
of the Cathedral Choir at Blackburn Cathedral.
Whilst at University David started singing on the professional church circuit
in London and sings regularly at a number of the London Churches. In September
2004 David took on the duties of a Lay clerk at Southwark Cathedral. David
performs regularly with Oxford Camerata under the direction of Jeremy Summerly
and many of the London choirs including Holst Singers, conducted by Stephen
Layton, as well as other choirs around the country and abroad.
Recent solo projects have included: Rachmaninov Vespers, Rossini Petite Messe
Solennelle, Mendelssohn Elijah, Bach St. John Passion (Evangelist and Arias),
Schnittke Requiem, Mozart Requiem, Handel’s Messiah, and Monteverdi Vespers.
Recent recordings include two discs for Naxos with Oxford Camerata (dir. Jeremy
Summerly) of sacred music by Nicolaus Gombert and Thomas Tallis, Decca
recording of Best of John Tavener including part of The Veil of the Temple (Holst
Singers), Hyperion recording of choral music by Pierre Villette to be released
soon.
Future concerts are to include: Mozart Requiem, Handel Messiah, and a number
of Bach Cantatas. David has also been invited to attend the Summer 2006 Music
Festival in Warsaw, Poland.
Whilst not singing, David can be found working for a leading London
international law firm in a finance role.
Baritone: Justin Harmer
...was born in London and educated at York University where he read English,
at the Royal College of Music where he took up a place as a senior exhibitioner
for a post-graduate study in voice, and as a mature student at King’s College
London where he has recently completed an MA in 19th century English Literature.
He has performed with the National Youth Music Theatre at the Edinburgh
Festival and appeared in concerts both as a soloist and as a chorister in several
countries in Europe including France, Germany, Austria, Italy, Spain, Luxembourg,
Belgium, Switzerland, The Czech Republic and, further afield, in Israel.
Justin appears as a soloist at home in London as well, where he pursues a
career as a teacher of Piano and Singing. For many years he was the repetiteur
for the Royal Ballet School Junior Associates. He sings regularly in the choir of
the Royal Hospital, for whom he sang the Bass Solo in Handel’s Messiah in the
2001 Chelsea Festival, and the Bass roles in Samson in the 2003 Festival.
13
Pianist: Alexander Chaplin…
...held organ scholarships at Lincoln Cathedral and Lincoln College, Oxford,
before postgraduate training at the Royal College of Music in both conducting
and organ, from which he graduated with distinction. His organ teachers have
included Patrick Russill, David Sanger and Nicholas Danby, and he has
participated in conducting masterclasses with the BBC Symphony Orchestra,
George Hurst and Sir Peter Maxwell Davies. In 2002 he received the choral training
diploma of the Royal College of Organists, as a prize-winner for obtaining the
highest marks in the examination. He is a former Musical Director of the Brentwood
Choral Society, Opera Severn and the North Herts Guild of Singers. Alexander is
in demand as a freelance accompanist and conductor; he is also Musical Director
of Guy’s, King’s and St Thomas’ Music Society, Organist of All Saints’ Goodmayes,
and Repetiteur for both Morley College, and for Vision Opera, in London.
Pianist: Christopher Cromar…
...was born in Scotland in 1977 and studied piano and organ at Chetham’s
and the Conservatoire Superieur in Paris. As an organist, he has given recitals
in many notable venues, including Westminster Abbey, St. Paul’s Cathedral,
Westminster Cathedral, King’s College, Cambridge, Notre Dame and Sainte Clotilde
as well as further afield in Europe and the USA.
In July 2001 Christopher gave the first performance of a new work by Errollyn
Wallen at the Oundle International Festival and subsequently gave the work its
London premiere at St. Paul’s Cathedral. After this performance Errollyn Wallen
wrote ‘...Christopher Cromar really is a most brilliant young musician’.
Christopher is the regular rehearsal pianist for The Chiltern Choir. He has
also worked as accompanist to some of the finest choirs in London and Paris,
including The Vasari Singers (at St. John’s Smith Square and Canterbury Cathedral)
and the Radio France Chorus. He has broadcast for the BBC and Radio France.
In addition to forthcoming recitals throughout England and a tour in Scotland,
Christopher has been invited to give a recital at Charterhouse (Sutton’s Hospital
Chapel) in The City of London to celebrate the restoration of their 1842 Walker
organ. Concerts abroad will take him to France, Switzerland, Sweden and a
second US recital tour in November.
Also active as a pianist, Christopher has performed extensively in the UK and
France as soloist and chamber musician and has recently performed Gershwin’s
Piano Concerto several times.
The Junior Choir of Watford Grammar School for Girls
We would like to thank the girls for singing with us this evening, Al


Use: 0.3412