Despite only taking up the position at St George’s, Hanover Square only a few months ago I have just been offered the vacancy at The Royal Hospital, Chelsea. It’s sad to leave St George’s so soon, especially because the choir is so friendly and welcoming. I am, however, looking forward to starting this new challenge. The Director of Music, Will Vann, has been in the job for a little over a year so it’s nice to join him at the start of his journey, too. I start next Sunday!
The Chapel Choir is a professional group of twelve singers (4 sopranos, 2 altos, 2 tenors and 4 basses) who are chosen not only for their vocal quality but also general musicianship and team skills. They are drawn from a wide variety of musical backgrounds and much interest is shown by London’s community of singers when a vacancy arises. Most of its members work as full-time musicians, either as singers of choral music or opera, or as pianists and conductors.
The choir’s wide and varied repertoire reflects all musical periods and choral styles by a wide range of composers, from Renaissance polyphony to the 21st century. The choir sings Choral Matins on most Sunday mornings, though an increasing number of mass settings are now being added to the repertoire, and also provides the music at many weddings, carol services and funerals of Chelsea Pensioners.
The choir has sung in several broadcasts of the popular BBC Television programme Songs of Praise and BBC Radio’s Sunday Half Hour and Choral Evensong. It has recorded for Guild Music (Remembrance and Resurrection), Creature Music (O Perfect Love) and produced a promotional CD (for the National Appeal) entitled Valiant Hearts. This featured the Requiems by Fauré and Rutter.
This choir’s regular concerts at the Royal Hospital are always popular sell-outs: it is also available for concerts and other events outside the Royal Hospital.