Christmas 2012

Hallelujah! It’s Christmas!

Saturday 15 December 2012 at 7.30pm and Sunday 16 December at 2pm, Chiltern Edge School, Sonning Common.

Photographs from the concert

Christmas Concert 2012 on YouTube

To see some video recordings of the Saturday concert on YouTube, please click on the links below:

Hallelujah chorus
Esta Noche by John Rutter
A baby so small by Alan Bullard

THIS is what I want from a Christmas concert — good quality music which is well sung, something amusing and an opportunity to sing Christmas carols.  This was the third Christmas concert I’d attended in a week and it was by far the best.  It left everyone in an excellent pre-Christmas mood.

On the programme were five traditional carols giving the audience ample opportunity to tune up and sing out. There was even an opportunity to sing without the choir which is a good test of whether a concert is going well — miserable audiences leave it to the choir.

Also on the programme was one of the most traditional pieces of Christmas music — Handel’s Messiah which required four soloists. (I would have preferred the accompaniment to be a small orchestra rather than organ — but I’m being picky.)

The soloists were excellent — alto Lindsay Bramley and soprano Lisa Wilson displayed excellent diction and interpretation of the music.  The choir excelled at Glory To God and the Hallelujah Chorus. The soloists also performed some Christmas music that fitted in really well with the concert, including a folksy ballad by Michael Head called The Little Road To Bethlehem and a charming Spanish carol arranged by John Rutter called Esta Noche.  Finally Stephen Holloway (bass) provided a very amusing song by Sterndale Bennett called The Carol Singers.

The choir sang some more modern carols of which my favourite was A Baby So Small, A Message So Great by Alan Bullard.

Certainly all the music delivered was of good quality which has become a recurring theme in Gwyn Arch’s concerts over the years. The choir will be performing Haydn’s Creation next year with a French choir from Grenoble at Reading Concert Hall. I’ve already got the date (April 27) in my diary.

John Evans , Henley Standard

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