News FromThe Choir

Summer Programme Announced - 'Summer by the Seaside'

Summer Programme Announced - 'Summer by the Seaside'

Saturday 13th March 2021

The Royal Leamington Spa Bach Choir goes to the seaside - musically and virtually, if not literally! And our return to in-person rehearsing even got a mention on Classic FM recently - Click Here to listen.

Many people will be thinking in terms of UK holidays this summer, so it is very appropriate that our Musical Director, Lee Dunleavy, has put together an appealing summer programme with a seaside theme. An Edwardian seaside, what is more, as all the pieces were composed around the turn of the 20th century, in the years leading up to the First World War. A timeline showing how all these composers fit into the framework of Sir Edward Elgar's lifetime is available via the document link below.

Our programme begins with a choral arrangement of Sir Edward Elgar’s much-loved Sea Pictures from 1899. Then comes Sea Drift by Samuel Coleridge-Taylor (1875-1912), whose best-known work Hiawatha’s Wedding Feast was performed by the choir in April 2017.

The next piece, To sea! the calm is o’er is by a little-known female composer, Florence Ashton Marshall (1843-1922). Florence wrote mainly songs and operettas, and with her husband worked on parts of Grove’s Dictionary of Music and Musicians.

Sir Charles Villiers Stanford(1852-1924) is best known to many singers today for his church music, but he also wrote orchestral and chamber works. His Songs of the Fleet dates from 1910. The programme ends with a piece by one of Stanford’s many pupils, John Ireland (1879-1962) - his Sea Fever has been arranged for choir by our very own Lee Dunleavy.

The choir is looking forward to learning these pieces during the summer term, and we fervently hope that we may be able to put on some sort of performance at the end of the term - whether to a live audience or as a recording, or by whatever means proves possible. We are so keen to share our music-making with a wider public once more!

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