The treats continue as the Coast to Coast Choir has pleasure in introducing the second of the four soloists for the combined choirs performance of Verdi’s famous Messe da Requiem to be performed at 7.30pm on Saturday 2nd July 2016 in the Assembly Rooms, Torquay Town Hall.
If you are unable to come to Torquay then the performance takes place again in the Pannier Market, Barnstaple on Sunday 3rd July starting at 3pm.
Tickets for the Torquay performance can be obtained through this website – for further details click here
Second on our list of soloists for these two concerts is South African baritone Dawid Kimberg. Dawid has stepped in to sing the tenor part as the soloist originally advertised, David Webb, is unable to join us. We are fortunate indeed to have Dawid to sing with us – as you will discover from his resume and the wonderful video from Inside Opera Live he is not only a fine singer but also capable of turning tweets into artistry.
Dawid was a Jette Parker Young Artist for The Royal Opera 2009–11, singing roles including Steersman (Tristan und Isolde) Moralès (Carmen) Marullo (Rigoletto) and Surintendant des Plaisirs (Cendrillon). Since leaving the Programme he has returned to sing Masetto (Don Giovanni) for the Company.
Kimberg was born in Johannesburg and moved to the UK in 2001 to study singing with Ryland Davies at the Royal College of Music and at the National Opera Studio. Kimberg’s engagements have included Dr Falke for Bolshoi Opera, Guglielmo (Così fan tutte) for Opera Holland Park, Count Almaviva (Le nozze di Figaro) for Glyndebourne on Tour, Mr Gedge for Théâtre du Capitole du Toulouse and Ned Keene (Peter Grimes) for Deutsche Oper am Rhein.
Kimberg regularly performs in many major oratorio works in the UK and beyond, and in recital has sung at the Wigmore Hall. Further concert appearances include Schubert’s song cycles Die schöne Müllerin and Schwanengesang in the Crush Room at the Royal Opera House.
We are in for a real treat as the Coast to Coast Choir has pleasure in introducing the soloists for the combined choirs performance of Verdi’s famous Messe da Requiem to be performed at 7.30pm on Saturday 2nd July 2016 in the Assembly Rooms, Torquay Town Hall. If you are unable to come to Torquay then the performance takes place again in the Pannier Market, Barnstaple on Sunday 3rd July starting at 3pm. Tickets for the Torquay performance can be obtained through this website – for further details click here
First on our list of soloists for these two concerts is Héloïse West, a well-known and accomplished soprano who we are delighted to welcome. Heloise will take us through the highs and lows of the great work finally reaching the highest of high notes towards to the end of the Requiem. You will discover what this is like if you watch the video below, sung by Renee Fleming and conducted by Antonio Pappano – if you haven’t time to listen to the whole piece go to 7 mins 15 seconds and listen for a moment or two. At 11mins 26 seconds you can hear another stratospherically high note. This is, indeed, one of the great feats of the human voice and to hear a singer live achieve this wonderful sound is a treat indeed.
Héloïse West was born in Devon. When she joined the National Youth Choir of Great Britain she received a gifted pupil award. She gained an Entrance Exhibition to the Royal Academy of Music, graduating with an LRAM and a Bachelor of Music degree in performance. She has also studied at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama.
Héloïse has recently started an in-depth course of study on Wagnerian roles with Lionel Friend.
She has a busy career in the South West singing oratorios.
Her performances include : Bach- St.Matthew Passion, St.John Passion,Mass in B Minor, Brahms– Requiem, Handel- Messiah, Haydn– Nelson Mass, Creation,Mendelssohn-Elijah, Mozart– C Minor Mass, Coronation Mass, Requiem,Poulenc-Gloria, Verdi-Requiem.
It’s always a challenge to learn a complex piece of music – especially if you don’t read music. South Devon Choir is a community choir and a recent survey of members revealed that 25% of members read music very little. Nonetheless, you don’t have to read music to be able to sing very complex music – ears are the key. Hearing the music as others sing it, listening to the piano and practice, practice, practice are what enables the singer to learn.
Here South Devon Choir practice the Sanctus from the Verdi Requiem with the passionate John Hobbs, their Musical Director. Each part (SATB) is split in two – so there are 8 parts singing. Timing is complex, the music intricate. With plenty of time to go until the actual performance members of the Choir concentrate on learning the unfamiliar notes and timing.
The performance itself will feature over 200 voices as South Devon Choir combines with choirs from North Devon and Cornwall to form the Coast to Coast Choir in an epic staging of the Requiem in the Assembly Rooms, Torquay Town Hall, Torquay – on 2nd July 2016 and again in Barnstaple Pannier Market on 3rd July. Accompanying them will be the Festival Orchestra and professional soloists Cheryl Brendish, Heloise West, David Webb and Darren Jeffery. Tickets are available from Visitor Centres in Torquay, Paignton and Newton Abbot, on our website (click here for tickets) or you can buy them on our Facebook page.
THERE is no doubt that we love tradition in Britain and one of the most satisfying traditions is to hear a choir singing and keeping alive the music of long ago; the tradition seems even stronger and more meaningful when the music is bound up with the history of the Church and the daily musical and choral life in our parishes and, particularly, our stunning cathedrals.
The Magnificat settings of Bach and Vivaldi have now been sung for almost 300 years since their first performances in the early 18th century and, of course, the story is much older than that. Go back another hundred years and we have the splendour of Tudor times and what has been termed a golden age in English music, when the Magnificat was being composed by the likes of Thomas Weelkes at Chichester Cathedral and Orlando Gibbons at Westminster Abbey; they died in 1623 and 1625 respectively. The traditional settings of Luther’s translation of the Magnificat can be traced back to variants of Gregorian chant and in Protestant music it is thought that no other Latin text was more often set to music.
There was a great resurgence of interest in Bach’s music in Victorian times, which may have been triggered in 1829 by a then rare performance of the St Matthew Passion conducted by Mendelssohn. Our nation’s choral societies have always loved their Bach and the South Devon Choir is maintaining that tradition on 28th November at The Parish Church of St Mary the Virgin, St Marychurch, Torquay, though it is surprising to note from Malvern Cooke’s history of our choir that Bach’s Magnificat – reckoned to be one of his most significant and popular works – has been performed only once before, in 1986 at Central Church, Torquay.
The problem is that maintaining tradition takes money and an awful lot of effort. Concerts such as this do require a budget, a great deal of planning and roughly a three-month session of weekly rehearsals. Basically, our singers do it because they love the music and they want to maintain a tradition.
For us, the audience at this time of year, it becomes a wonderful Christmas gift.
If you would like to join us on Saturday buy your tickets online here