Programme notes for the concert can be downloaded here ...
Concert Programme Notes
The Choral Society has chosen Elgar, Parry, Vaughn Williams and Holst to celebrate the English desire to get together to sing.
The title of Elgar's work — 'The Music Makers' — says it all. The first two lines sung are 'We are the music makers, and we are the dreamers of dreams'; the poem expands this theme throughout the work, and Elgar enriches the
words with deep passion.
'I was glad' (Latin incipit, Laetatus sum) - an introit in the Anglican church as well as the anthem traditionally sung at the coronation of the monarch.
We are performing its most famous setting, written in 1902 by Sir Hubert Parry, which sets verses 1–3,6,7 from Psalm 122.
Three well-known pieces by Ralph Vaughan Williams (1872 – 1958) are also included : 'Linden Lea' (1902), 'The Lark Ascending' (1914-20) and 'Songs of Travel' (1904)
And, we will also enjoy the colourful music of Holst's ballet music to his opera 'The Perfect Fool'.
As the congregation of St Thomas's Church, Leipzig, settled into their pews on Good Friday 1727, they would have been expecting as usual a musical setting of the
Passion narrative. But what drama awaited them!
What artistry Bach used to relate Matthew's account of the Passion of Christ! There was nothing 'usual' about this version.
Bach chose his harmonies, his melodies, his instrumentation, and his rhythms with such extraordinary care that the words of the narrative and the
contemplations sung alongside would have maximum emotional impact on his listeners.
As Passiontide 2015 draws close, this wonderful music may help us to consider the meaning and significance of the events portrayed.
Further details and concert poster for March 21st 2015 ..
- Alexander L'Estrange - 'Njooni! Zimbe! Nyimbo za Afrika!'
('Come, sing the songs of Africa!') .
- Will Todd - 'Mass in Blue'
Alexander L'Estrange's 'Njooni! Zimbe! Nyimbo za Afrika!' is a celebration of African song and reflects some of the ways in which music plays a part in everyday life in Africa and includes playground songs,
a lullaby, a drinking song, wedding songs and beautiful funeral and worship music.
See on-line : Alexander L'Estrange's 'Zimbe!'
Will Todd's 'Mass in Blue' has taken choral societies and concert platforms by storm since it was written in 2003. It has now received more than 250 performances.
In the introduction to the work it is described as 'an upbeat setting of the latin mass, a brilliant blend of driving grooves and clear, strong, choral writing against which
the solo piano and solo soprano voice weave and blend in a delightful aural tapestry'.
See on-line : Will Todd's Mass in Blue
A concert not to be missed!
Tickets for all of these concerts are available from :
Bedford Tourist Information Centre, St. Paul's Square, Bedford MK04 1SJ
or from members of Bedford Choral Society