TWO world-class musicians, both based in the West Country, will join Lyme Bay Chorale for their spring concert this year.
Andrew Millington, former director of music at Exeter Cathedral, will take the rostrum as guest conductor, while Peter King, organist emeritus at Bath Abbey, will play the organ.
The concert, to be held on Saturday, April 21 at 7pm, comprises a selection of stunning English choral music, featuring Elgar’s ‘From the Bavarian Highlands’ and ‘Let the People Praise Thee, O God’ by William Mathias as well as works by Parry, Vaughan Williams and Britten.
The concert will be held at St Michael’s Parish Church in Lyme Regis, where the choir rehearses under the baton of musical director Alex Davies. Andrew Millington will conduct the final few practices and the performance itself.
Peter King’s appearance at the concert is something of a surprise. Alex was due to play the organ accompaniment, but he injured his hand last week and won’t be able to play for a while, so Peter stepped in at almost the last minute to ensure the performance can still go ahead. He will also be playing a couple of solo pieces.
“Andrew and Peter are both world-class musicians and I’m delighted that they’ve agreed to be involved with our concert,” said Alex.
“Andrew has an association with St Michael’s that goes back several years, since he played in our first series of organ recitals, so this new role as a guest conductor with Lyme Bay Chorale cements that relationship. And Peter – who has a stellar reputation – has saved the day like a real musical hero!
“Their presence will ensure the concert is a truly special experience for local music-lovers.”
The solo singers for the evening will be soprano Chloe Stratta and bass William Armiger. Chloe grew up in Lyme and was a pupil at Colyton Grammar School, where she sung in the chamber choir, taking part in tours to Paris, Malta, Oxford and Chester. She went on to study music at the University of Manchester.
Chloe will sing the soprano solo parts in ‘Festival Te Deum’ by Britten and ‘Hear My Words, Ye People’ by Parry, as well as solo songs by other English composers.
William sang for more than 40 years in the choir at Gloucester Cathedral, where he was also a senior lay clerk and chorister tutor. He studied at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama and has performed widely as a baritone soloist in BBC broadcasts and on recordings as well as at concerts and recitals. William will sing the bass solo in the Parry anthem.
Andrew Millington recently arrived early for rehearsal so he could meet the members of St Michael’s Primary School Choir, led by Alison Davies, which practises in the church before Lyme Bay Chorale. Andrew was very happy to share some of his knowledge with the children.
Tickets for the spring concert are £13 in advance from Lyme Regis Tourist Information Centre, Penny Black Café (behind the post office) or from choir members, and £15 on the door.