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Hitting the right note at St Paul's

by Michael Ford last modified 15 Jan, 2019 03:56 PM

The new year has begun on a high note for the choir of St John’s, Devizes, as they were invited back to sing at St Paul’s Cathedral in London for a second time.

The choir’s 23 children and 18 adults were joined by several past members who returned specially for the occasion.

Having impressed on their first visit two years ago, they were delighted to receive an invitation to return and sing Evensong on Friday 4 January.

St John’s Director of Music, Chris Totney, said:

“We had to be up early for the coach but, once we got there, it was certainly worth it.
It was an honour to be invited back to the cathedral and the choir rose to the occasion spectacularly.

“Having warmed up underground in the Choir Practice Room, just off the Crypt, it was soon time to head up to the Cathedral Floor to rediscover the incredible acoustics of St Paul’s which rang to the glorious sounds of Philip Moore’s Responses, a dramatic set of Psalms, Herbert Howells’s Evening Canticles written for St John’s College, Cambridge, and a very atmospheric performance of James MacMillan’s anthem, A New Song”.

“The staff at the cathedral were very hospitable and we received some lovely comments from them after the service.”

One returning singer who grew up in the choir remarked afterwards:
“It’s not often that I well up because I’m so overwhelmed by music but today, when the organ was blasting out the end of the anthem and the place was literally shaking from it, I wanted to laugh and cry at the same time! I feel amazingly lucky to sing in this fabulous building again.”

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