October Newsletter

Dear Singers

Welcome to our fourth newsletter of 2017. Please feel free to forward it to other good singers you know and. if you reading this on the website, please consider joining our mailing List for advance notice of what's coming up.

Trip Reports: Riga and Assisi

We had great hopes for Riga - and the city more than lived up to them. Our splend Baroque reherasal room was a short walk across the park from our very pleasant hotel and Maestro Perrin was on top form. We sang a rich mix of Russian, Baltic and English pieces which was very well received at our end of course concert. Catching the tail end of the 2017 International Choir games was a bonus - giving us a chance to hear some splendid choirs from other countries and one of the main judges, John Rutter was staying at our hotel. If you weren't there you missed a real treat. Pictures from the week can be found here.

It is so hard to write a report for Assisi because it's always such a good week, always well attended by good singers, and always such a pleasure to return to. We keep reassuring people that Assisi is not usually much hotter than the rest of southern Europe in any given month and that ladies usually need a cardigan for al fresco dining. Of course if the rest of Europe is having a heat wave it will be hot everywhere...

This year, however, all records were broken and we had three days with temperatures over 40 degrees. Despite the temperatures we all coped in the shade, the rehearsals continued as normal with a couple of large fans and we ate a lot of ice cream. Assisi did cool down later in the week and our concert in the basilica under David Skinner's baton was as enjoyable as ever. New security arrangements make it harder to access the Upper basilica which impacted on the size of our audience a bit - but not their enjoyment. Pictures of the week can be found here.

Other 2017 Events

Our traditional cathedral weekend took place this year in Norwich - one of England's finest cathedral where we were made to feel very welcome. Peter North was has usual calm, charming self and we look forward to singing with him again next year.

The Glory of Venice and our Spanish retreat are both fully booked with (short) waiting lists. Our Advent event in Weimar and Leipzig is almost full but at time of wiriting there are still a small number of places. Bookings will close in just a few days as our hotel options expire. Details here

The 2018 Programme

Now the part you have all been waiting for... We are very pleased with next year's programme which should offer something to suit all musical tastes and aspirations. We offer a mix of early and later music, a capella and accompanied, familiar and new. 

Health Warning: Booking for the main programme will not start until January and these are all the details we have at this early stage. They are accurate at time of writing. Full details and prices will be published on the website when booking starts.


June Week for Advanced Singers, Avila
17 June - 24 June   Directed by David Skinner

We will return to our much loved city of Avila for another week of unaccompanied Renaissance gorgeousness with David Skinner. A good standard of sight-reading is required and singers will be asked to complete a more detailed application form.

A Week in Dresden
1 July - 8 July   Musical director tbc.

Dresden was a huge hit during our first visit and was heavily oversubscribed. With a four-star hotel backing onto the River Elbe, great museums, exquisite architecture, and a visit to the Meissen porcelain workshops it's no surprise. Here is a second chance to experience all this. [Pictures]

A Week in Budapest
15 July - 22 July   Directed by Patrick Craig

This will be our third visit to the exotic Hungarian capital. Expect dinner on a Danube cruiser, great scenery, good food and wine, and a week of pleasant, good-humored, music making under the baton of Patrick Craig. The week will feature a mix of Renaissance and more recent repertoire [Pictures]

Assisi Summer School
5 August - 12 August   Directed by David Skinner

This will be the last Assisi week directed by David Skinner for a while so don''t miss it. We will study a carefully selected programme of unaccompanied Early Music masterpieces concluding with a concert in the Basilica of San Francesco.

English Summer School, Bath
12 August - 18 August   Directed by Nigel Perrin

And now for something completely different. Based in the beautiful and historic City of Bath we will work on an exclusively English programme concentrating on the music of Purcell and his contemporaries. There will be opportunites for solo and semi-chorus work.

Church Music of the Portuguese Masters, Evora
2 September - 9 September   Directed by David Allinson

The city of Évora and, in particular, its stunning cathedral, is the epicentre of the ‘Golden Age’ of Portuguese polyphony. We will study music by the three greatest composers of the time, Manuel Cardoso, Duarte Lobo and Filipe de Magalhăes, and sing a concert in the cathedral.

Sherry and Southern Spain
23 September - 30 September   Directed by Jeremy Jackman

Based near Jerez in the heart of the Spanish sherry region we will enjoy a week of sun, sea  - and Sherry. We will enjoy tastings of award-winning sherry and Iberian Ham and pay a visit to nearby Cadiz and Gibraltar. There will be a choice of four-star and five-star accommodation.

The Glory of Venice
10 October- 14 October   Musical Director tbc

This popular long weekend is always fully booked so stand by in January to apply in good time. We stay in the best part of Venice, near to all the sights but away from the crowds. And we get to sing Venetian music in Venice. No wonder it's so successful. Pictures from last year here.

Tribute tour of Flanders, Ghent
1 November - 5 November   Directed by Peter North

There is no UK cathedral weekend planned for 2018 but, as the world prepares to pay tribute to the fallen on the 100th Anniversary of the end of World War One, Peter North will direct a programme of appropriate music in churches in Ghent and Bruges, concluding with participation at the moving Last Post Ceremony by the Menin Gate  

Mozart Requiem in Vienna
2 December - 5 December  Directed by Jeremy Jackman

Every two years, by invitation, we perform Mozart's Requiem in Vienna's Karlskirche with full Baroque orchestra and soloists. The concert takes place at midnight at the hour of Mozart's death. The Church is always packed and Vienna is surrounded by lavish Christmas markets. We need lots of good singers for this important concert so please tell your friends and ask them to join our Mailing List or let us know they might be interested in coming to Vienna.

Best wishes

Nick & Jane