Passionate about great choral music
Happy Christmas from the City Choir!
Our exciting season 2014-2015 includes a tour to Paris and an energetic performance of Zimbe! with a large choir of children. We also celebrate hugely popular composer Karl Jenkins’ 70th birthday in Birmingham. In “A Trumpet Shall Sound” with trumpeter Crispian Steele-Perkins, going back to our roots, we perform Vaughan Williams’ Mass in G Minor in Tewkesbury Abbey. (We gave its first performance on 6th December 1922 as part of the choir’s second season.) And, of course, Handel’s Messiah. Our next concert is Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony. Read the complete list of concerts below. Our smaller group, Voices from the City of Birmingham Choir, performs in concerts, at the NEC Festive Gift Fair, at weddings and major corporate Christmas events, and is a popular choice for hire – please enquire!
Karl Jenkins’ 70th Birthday concert (Saturday 1st November 2014, 7.30 pm, Symphony Hall) Spectacular Classics (Saturday 22nd November, 2.30 pm and 7.30 pm, Symphony Hall)
Handel’s Messiah – Birmingham favourite (Friday 12th December, 7 pm, Symphony Hall) Download leaflet HERE As suggested by the Telegraph newspaper’s Travel section, buying tickets for a performance of Handel’s Messiah at Symphony Hall is a great way to spend an evening in Birmingham.
Christmas Classics (Saturday 20th December, 2.30 pm, Symphony Hall)
Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony (Tuesday 30th December, 7.30 pm, Symphony Hall)
Tour to Paris, including Sunday Mass in Notre Dame (Wednesday 8th – Sunday 12th April 2015)
A Trumpet shall Sound, with renowned trumpeter Crispian Steele-Perkins. (Saturday 16th May, 7 pm, Tewkesbury Abbey)
Zimbe! Come sing the songs of Africa! (Sunday 14th June, 2.30 pm, Town Hall)
A choir of 150 singers, we are always looking for new members to join us. We’re a friendly choir with a manageable commitment for busy people, rehearsing on Tuesdays in central Birmingham from 6.30 to 8.30pm. Read MORE.
a truly splendid choir with everyone palpably performing to their utmost— Birmingham Post, December 2014
Also read Birmingham Post. Struck by the prevailing bugs, I could not sing in Messiah but repaired to the Grand Tier. (I was last in the audience for a City Choir Messiah in 1984 whilst a student, so it was a rare opportunity to see what the paying public gets.)
What a fine performance! Throughout, delicacy, precision of tuning and diction, lightness of touch, agility, dynamic range, good balance between players and singers. Of course, Messiah is a marvel – Handel has written no “dud” numbers in this piece. There was good contrast between main themes and accompanimental semiquavers. The control of tempo and diminuendo at the moment of “the iniquity of us all” was very moving. My favourite moment, “If he delight in him” with staccato – which brought me to the choir in the first place – was consistently applied by all the voices. Even the semitone ascension that is “Since by man came death” stayed in tune.
When you know the work inside out, you also know to look for the pitfalls. I am delighted to say that this performance avoided them, with the exception of a lack of “sync” by fine soprano soloist Rhian Lois in her final aria. James Oxley, tenor, played a dramatic continuity role with movement and gesture (and excellent singing, mostly without a copy) helping to glue the “story” together. Bass George Humphreys also provided excellent recitative and arias (together with the Sound of a first rate Trumpet). Catherine Hopper, contralto, completed this good team. The small CBSO band, with continuo keyboard from Thomas Trotter and Alexander Mason, played with sensitivity and warmth.
Fine work by Adrian Lucas, choir, orchestra and soloists, deserving the warm and immediate applause after the final “Amen” from a very good sized audience in Symphony Hall. Pencil in your diary for Friday 4th December 2015 – don’t miss it.
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We can provide a choir for weddings, parties or other events. Voices from the City of Birmingham Choir have been enthusiastically received at a wide range of events. A choir of between 10 and 30 singers can perform serious or more light-hearted songs to suit your occasion. Read MORE.