Sacred Choral Music from across Europe

Repertoire:

I Was Glad - Parry

Justorum Animae - Stanford

A Clare Benediction - Rutter

How Lovely are thy Dwellings Fair - Brahms 

Impeiral March (Organ Solo by Kris Thomsett) - Elgar

Missa Sancti Nicolai (Gloria, Sanctus, Angus Dei)

(Soloists: Samantha Green, Kristy Pattimore, Charles Ritchie, Jordan English) - Haydn

Evening Song (Organ Solo by Kris Thomsett) - Bairstow

Light of the World - Elgar 

I Will Sing with the Spirit - Rutter

Locus Iste - Bruckner

Blest Pair of Sirens - Parry

Conductor:

Edward Taylor

Sacred Choral Music from across Europe
Lawrence Tomlinson

It was a very special evening for the Penrith Singers as they gave their first concert since Dec 2019. With covid safeguarding concerning the choir, it was a small audience that gathered in St Andrew’s Church on 23rd October to enjoy a programme of sacred choral pieces.


With their conductor, Edward Taylor, Assistant Organist at Carlisle Cathedral; and with Kris Thomsett, Assistant Director of Music at Newcastle Cathedral, accompanying on the organ; the Choir began gloriously, with Parry’s great anthem ‘I was glad’, sung at Royal Coronations since the crowning of Edward the Seventh in 1902.


The Choir has practiced over ‘Zoom’ during the pandemic, but only began ‘live’ rehearsals in September. So to produce a programme of choral music under such circumstances is, with the inevitable reduction in numbers, truly heroic!


As each item was introduced by David Kendrew, there was much to enjoy in the variety on offer. Two unaccompanied pieces, Stanford’s ‘Justorum animae’ and Bruckner’s ‘Locus iste’, brought out all the parts in harmony while two more familiar pieces by John Rutter showed a gentle warmth in the singing, as did Brahms ‘ How lovely are thy dwellings’. A piece from Elgar’s ‘Light of Life’ brought out the accuracy and discipline in the singing, the soprano line excelling as in three items from Haydn’s. St. Nicholas Mass, with soloists taken from the choir: Soprano – Samantha Green, Alto – Kristy Pattimore, Tenor – Charles Ritchie, Bass – Jordan English (St Giles Cathedral). The concert began with Parry, and ended with Parry and included two nicely contrasting solo organ pieces.


The Choir, with Kris Thomsett on the organ, bringing out the drama of the music in his accompaniment,  with Edward Taylor’s conducting with absolute conviction, should be justly proud of their performance.