Where to begin? It's been a busy few months and we have been North and South and East to sing!
On 1st June, we were invited to join the wedding celebrations in Greenwich (East) for one of our basses, David. David also accompanies and conducts some of our rehearsals, so it was a musical extravaganza of a day. Congratulations to Mr and Mrs H!
Later in June we journeyed South of the river to Southwark Cathedral for Choral Evensong. It's a beautiful cathedral and a stunning setting for Brewer's Magnificat and Nunc Dimittis in D and Stainer's How Beautiful Upon the Mountains, as well as psalms and hymns galore.
We then participated in a special service of Commemoration for the Lancastria, lost off Saint Nazaire on 17 June 1940 with over 4,000 souls aboard. This remains Britain’s greatest maritime disaster, but is not widely renowned due to the War Effort and censorship at that time. (This wouldn’t happen now in the era of rolling news). The Lancastria was a Cunard liner, redeployed in the War to rescue troops stranded at Dunkirk. Many aboard were returning troops, in addition to women and children. Our “home church” of St Katharine Cree in the City of London, is also home to the Ship’s Bell, salvaged from the wreckage. In addition to the National Anthem we sang La Marseillaise, pieces from the Darke Mass in A minor including Sanctus, Benedictus and Agnus Dei, Wesley’s Thou Wilt Keep Him in Perfect Peace, and Purcell’s Thou Knowest Lord.
Our Summer Concert in July featured the glorious Rachmaninoff All-Night Vigil. We are a classic four-part choir but we split into eleven different parts for this piece and also had to get our teeth around some Church Slavonic (luckily it came phonetically in the score!). Here is a video of Movement 5 which features a 'Kiev' chart, lots of basso profundo, a tenor solo from our fabulous Charlie, and the clock in the organ loft at St Katherine Cree.
Following the success of our Summer concert, we were delighted to have had the opportunity to repeat the Rachmaninoff in the beautiful setting of Malmesbury Abbey. The vicar there is Oliver Ross, who was the Guild Vicar at St Katharine Cree for 12 years and a staunch supporter of Lloyd’s Choir. The concert was in aid of the Abbey’s roof fund and was very well received.
St James is the secondary patron of St Katharine Cree Church by virtue of St Kath taking over the parish of St James's Dukes Place after it was demolished in the 19th century. The only known claim to fame of this latter church was that it was rather good at fixing dodgy marriages; however, it should be noted that this particular characteristic was not inherited by St Kath! The service took the form of Evensong with contributions from many of the groups which use the space at St Kath's and culminated in a fabulous cake, as pictured with Rev Nick.
We closed our Season with our annual End of Season party. Choir members gathered for lunch and enjoyed the opportunity to socialise, reminisce about the Season and look forward to the next!
Looking forward, we now have our 'Come and Sing' Sessions on 5th and 12th August (1pm at St Katherine Cree), all are welcome to join us for an opportunity to sing through some works which are outside our normal repertoire.
Our next Season start on Monday 2nd September, with our first concert at lunchtime on Tuesday 1st October when we will be singing Faure's Requiem.