Peter Broadbent writes about programming our next concert:
Seascapes is the title of a set of three songs written for JCS by Paul Reade, who died 20 years ago in June 1997. It was written as a companion piece to St Brendan and the Fishes, an evocative and amusing piece he wrote for the English Chamber Choir, and I wanted to revive these pieces as a tribute to a fine composer. Inevitably the sea and water became the focus of the programme and I was surprised by the number of sea pieces we had premiered. I have included Anthony Payne’s vivid setting of Tennyson’s Break, break, break, which we premiered at the Cheltenham Festival, Judith Bingham’s fascinating re-working of Stanford’s The Blue Bird which we premiered at the Three Choirs Festival, and the Mariner’s Compass by Lynne Plowman which was a Presteigne Festival commission.
We shall also be performing four settings of Caliban’s song Full Fathom Five from The Tempest, the imaginative Northern Lights by Ēriks Ešenvalds and the classic Sit Down, You’re Rockin’ the Boat from Guys and Dolls. In addition, we shall give the first performance of another JCS commission from a young composer, Ben Ponniah, whose wife sings in the choir. His Sing unto the Lord takes its text from Isaiah, including the words “Ye that go down to the sea, and all that is therein”.
Another new item to the JCS repertoire is by the gifted young composer Rhiannon Randle, recently shortlisted for the National Centre for Early Music (NCEM} Young Composer awards in conjunction with BBC Radio 3 and the Tallis Scholars. The ‘sea’ in her piece is more figurative – it is a setting of a Christina Rossetti poem On life’s dividing sea.
For venue and timing details for this concert, visit our Performances page