The Best of Britten

On Sunday I went to see a brilliant concert by Ex Cathedra. It was great for lots of reasons:

1) I wasn’t singing in it (so I got to listen!)

2) It was a programme entirely made of up of some of my favourite music by Benjamin Britten (my fave composer)

3) Ex Cathedra sang really well

4) Town Hall works really well for this kind of music

 

The concert opened with A Ceremony of Carols – a great piece just for SSA and Harp. The Ex Cathedra women folk (and a few male altos) were joined by a host of young singers from the Ex Cathedra Academy of Vocal Music. What an opportunity for those young singers! I remember doing just that as a young singer alongside Ex Cathedra in Coventry Cathedral – if the memory of that performance lasts with them like it did me – it will prove to be a lifelong inspiration.

A Boy was Born was great too and the gallery singers did a great job in a difficult role. Anyone who criticises Britten for not writing complex symphonies should listen to this piece and try to work out how he came up with such amazing textures!

Finally – St Nicolas – and yes I was crying when the pickled boys came back to life! [if you don’t know the piece – go and see it!]

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One thought on “The Best of Britten

  1. bobbiejane says:

    Ah – I wish I had known about that concert, used to sing in the CBSO Youth Chorus and we took his War Requiem to Vienna and round the UK. There’s nothing like going to a Christmas concert to put you in the festive spirit!! I am going to see if I can find some – inspired!

    BTW – a certain Gurdan Thomas is blogging: http://gurdanthomas.wordpress.com/

    My social media hat couldn’t resist a little bit of coercion! Tut tut!

    I think your Rich might be included as a scribe!

    Hope all is well and if I don’t see you before have a lovely Christmas!

    Bobbie

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