• Regarding The choir in general
  • Review of "Requiem for the Innocent"

    Crisis brings opportunity. Although choirs have been particularly disadvantaged throughout the COVID pandemic, the creativity and initiative that has been shown by conductors, choral groups, instrumentalists and engineers/producers has produced some wonderful results! While online performances are perhaps not the 'real thing', they do allow for many more people to 'attend' the performance - and to watch it on several occasions. I have received many thoughtful and insightful comments from people in the UK and abroad. They really appreciated the two pieces, the performance and the production.

    Having watched the online performance of the Kodaly programme you gave last December, I had an idea of what to expect. The 'Requiem' and the Brahms, however, also required orchestral forces which gave added interest and colour. And also the wonderful solo singing from Hebe James, Guy Johnson and Samanthi Shanjeevan. The first thing that took me aback was actually hearing words being sung! While Sibelius computer notation programmes have excellent playback facilities, any vocal sound or word is heard simply as a sustained "ah". I had almost forgotten that there was a text with real words!

    I found the performance very moving and I could not have been more pleased with the outcome. Despite the fact that you were unable to hear one another (and that Stephen could not hear any of you!) there was a definite sense of a choral blend and of singing as one unified body. I was so aware of everyone giving their best. Stephen's interpretation was just how I had intended and Steve Richer's production was masterful! I thank you all most sincerely for taking on a new piece in these restricted times and therefore not having the opportunity to listen to previous recordings.

    Thank you all so much once again and I hope that the day is coming closer when we can all sing together in the same space. I really do look forward to hearing the whole work.
    - James Robertson


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