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Choir home from scintillating tour

18 JULY: We are just back from an outstandingly successful choir tour to Suffolk, where we sang three times in a range of delightful settings, had a wonderful audience response, and made lots of new friends.

The choir at Woodbridge - our third Suffolk venue

We began the tour on Friday July 14 with a 45-minute sing to a sizeable lunchtime audience at the cathedral of Bury St Edmunds.  That evening we performed at the spectacular Holy Trinity Church at Long Melford, one of the great fifteenth-century Suffolk wool churches.

Our third appearance came the following evening at St Mary’s, Woodbridge, a beautifully intimate church close to the village square.   We had resounding applause at the two church concerts, and felt we had somehow struck a chord with these two friendly communities.

We sang our usual diverse repertoire, a mix of old and new, including the recent additions The Sound of Silence and Scarborough Fair. Between sets, Darren Wilkins treated the audience to a high-quality flute recital, accompanied by our pianist Fran Ringer.

The consensus was that we improved steadily through the tour, reaching a high at Woodbridge.  As relayed by our music director Richard Hoyle, one choir member commented: “Live music is a magical thing when everything comes together perfectly" – and this, said Richard, was the case at Woodbridge.

Farewell to Fran at Woodbridge

This also happened to be the last CMVC performance by Fran Ringer ­ ­– who was born at Woodbridge.  Wishing her well for the future, Richard commented that of all the seven choir pianists in his time as director, she matched the highest standards – and was also the most fun.

The choir at Bury St Edmunds Cathedral (photo JWT)

In another choir ceremony, the Alan Shield, awarded to a member who makes a special contribution to the choir’s welfare, was presented to second tenor Martin Perkins (full report in News for Members section.)   Between times, the choir enjoyed a cruise on the River Orwell from Ipswich, and generally made the most of its three days in Suffolk.

The choir has now embarked on its regular summer break. Rehearsals resume on 7 September and the first concert of the new season takes place on 23 September (see Concert Dates in CMVC section.)


 
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