On Wednesday 21 March, the College’s Chamber Choir led Evensong at Chichester Cathedral. Consecrated in the 12th century and famously described as ‘the most typical English cathedral’, Chichester boasts a remarkable musical heritage, including the renowned Renaissance composer Thomas Weelkes as a former organist and acting as the commissioning body behind Leonard Bernstein’s 1965 ‘Chichester Psalms’.
Chamber Choir, who have historically sung Evensong in some of the country’s finest churches and cathedrals, led a local congregation in the evening’s worship with Thomas Tallis’ Responses, psalm chanting, canticles by Howard Skempton and a setting of the ‘Hostias’ by Mozart. Earlier on in the day, the choir had the opportunity to explore the Cathedral, who also hosted afternoon tea before the service.
Speaking after the service, Curriculum Manager Harry White said, “This was a wonderful opportunity for our students to lead an ancient religious service, at whose heart is the power of music to inspire and uplift. Introducing Chamber Choir to Evensong has been, traditionally, one of the most important things that the music department has achieved, and I was thrilled by the students’ professionalism in directing such a complex service and by the beauty of their musicianship.”
First year student Jack Theaker commented, “What an amazing opportunity to sing Evensong; a new context for so many of us. To lead the service in such an inspiring space was deeply moving.”