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Steventon Choral Society

Concerts in 2010–2011

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Thursday 9th June and Saturday 11th June: A Grand Night for Singing

Steventon Village Hall

Conductor: Terry Pearce

Pianist: Robert Thomas

A series of songs from shows by Rodgers and Hammerstein began the concert with Its A Grand Night For Singing from State Fair, Some Enchanted Evening from South Pacific and a medley from The King and I. Rebecca Joisce (soprano) continued the songs from the shows theme with I Don't Know How to Love Him from Jesus Christ Superstar before the choir returned to sing a medley of songs from Les Miserables including solos from Abby Evans (contralto), Helen Pearce (soprano), Rebecca Joisce (soprano) and Terry Pearce (bass). Mo Hunt followed with a humorous poem based on an earring and the Steventon Church Choir performed the anthem, Song of Mary. The first half closed with a debut solo for contralto Caroline Miller singing Harry Belafonte's hit, Scarlet Ribbons, and the choir singing A Sunshine Medley (Over The Rainbow, I'm Always Chasing Rainbows and Singin' In The Rain).

The second half began with a small group of glamorous ladies from the choir reminding everyone that Diamonds Are A Girl's Best Friend, followed by John Hunt regaling some of his favourite anecdotes. Then it was back to Rodgers and Hammerstein with Oh, What A Beautiful Morning from Oklahoma from the choir and I Could Have Danced All Night from My Fair Lady sung by Helen Pearce (soprano). The next piece from the choir was something quite different – a quodlibet (music with two melodies) featuring I Believe and Ave Maria by Bach-Gounod. This was followed by a small group, the Steventon Singers, singing Consider Yourself from Oliver and Terry Pearce (bass) singing two old favourites – Bachelor Boy and Michael Row The Boat Ashore. The choir returned to sing two more modern songs, Tears In Heaven by Eric Clapton and Annie's Song by John Denver, before the highlight of the second half, Joseph And The Amazing Technicolour Dreamcoat by Andrew Lloyd Webber and Tim Rice ended the concert.

 

Sunday 17th April: Spring Concert

St Michael & All Angels, Steventon

Conductor: Terry Pearce

Organ/keyboard: Michael Evans

Guest cellist: Christine Baugh

The main pieces from this concert of sacred music were William Lloyd Webber's Missa 'Princeps Pacis' and the choral suite from Karl Jenkins' The Armed Man. The choir also sang three anthems by John Rutter (For the Beauty of the Earth, The Lord Bless You and Keep You, and God Be in My Head), an arrangement by Terry Pearce of The Lord is My Shepherd (Crimond) and an arrangement by Michael Evans of the hymn, Holy Spirit, Truth Divine. An arrangement by Terry Pearce of the famous Easter hymn, When I Survey the Wondrous Cross, was sung by an octet of Rebecca Joisce, Diana Bowder, Caroline Miller, Frances Brightman, Jack Jarvis, Martin Blogg, George Russell and Terry Pearce. The concert also included a solo by Helen Pearce of the song, How Beautiful (words and music by Twila Paris), accompanied by Terry Pearce (guitar) and Michael Evans (keyboard).

The concert raised £360 for Church funds.

 

Sunday 19th December: St Michael & All Angels, Steventon

Members of the choral society joined the church choir for the annual Festival of Nine Lessons and Carols.

 

Saturday 11th December and Thursday 16th December: A Spirit of Christmas

Steventon Village Hall

Conductor: Terry Pearce

Pianist: Michael Evans

All profits from the Saturday concert are being donated to Oxford Mencap (Hill End camps) in memory of Sarah who loved her annual holiday there and who died suddenly in 2010.

The first half opened with the choir singing an arrangement by Sir David Willcocks of the unaccompanied carol, Deck The Hall, a traditional welcome to the Christmas season. This was followed by Winter Wonderland, the first of the Christmas songs in the concert from the United States, and a new setting for the choir of the well-known carol, In The Bleak Midwinter. After two carols for the audience to join in, the choir sang Silver Bells from The Lemon Drop Kid (a 1951 comedy film from 1951 starring Bob Hope). Given the concert's theme of a spirit of Christmas, Rebecca Joisce (mezzo-soprano) chose for her unaccompanied solo a selection of verses from a 'Steventon' wassail. The choir then sang Candlelight Carol, the first of two well-known carols in the concert by John Rutter, and accompanied the narrator Trish Napper in a performance of John Julius Norwich's spoof of The Twelve Days of Christmas. Guests Steventon Church Choir sang a Christmas anthem, Song of Mary, and following two more audience carols, the first half closed with the choir singing a setting of the old Basque carol, The Angel Gabriel, the well-known carol Ding Dong Merrily On High and a concert version of Rudolph The Red-Nosed Reindeer.

The choir don antlers for Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer
The second half began with a Christmas special performance of Santa Baby with actions by a troupe of choir members (seven ladies and two gents) dressed in o 'Father Christmas' outfits. Accompanying himself on the guitar Terry Pearce then entertained the audience with three songs from the 1950s/1960s — Bachelor Boy (Cliff Richard and the Shadows, 1962), Diana (Paul An ka, 1957) and In A Tiny House By A Tiny Stream (The Four Lads and Max By graves, 1954). Changing the mood, the choir sang a traditional carol, All My Heart, before Helen Pearce (soprano) sang the song, Have Yourself A Merry Little Christmas, immortalised by Judy Garland in the musical Meet Me In St Louis. Two more carols for the audience were followed by I'm Gonna Rise Up Singing from The Steventon Singers, a small group of choir members who get together to provide entertainment for residents of old people's homes, and the choir singing Love Came Down At Christmas by John Rutter and Holy Child, a setting of Away in A Manger by Easthope Martin. The last two audience carols of the evening were followed by as Christmas message from the chairman, Caroline Miller, and two final songs from the choir — We Wish You A Merry Christmas and an arrangement of God Bless Us Everyone from Walt Disney's A Christmas Carol (recorded by Andrea Botticelli).
Audience carols  

Once in Royal David's City
A Child This Day Is Born
We Three Kings of Orient Are (soloists: Caroline Miller, Francis , Martin Bloggs)
While Shepherds Watched Their Flocks By Night (to the tune of Ilkley Moor Bah Tat)

Good King Wenceslas
O Little Town Of Bethlehem
Hark The Herald Angels Sing
O Come All Ye Faithful

 

Saturday 23rd October: Concert at St Michael & All Angels, Steventon, to celebrate the centenary of the church organ
Steventon Choral Society was one of the guests at this special concert in the church with Terry Pearce conducting and Robert Thomas playing the newly refurbished organ. The pieces performed by the choir brought out all the facets of the organ's sound and tone:

  • Zadok the Priest — Handel
  • I Will Sing With The Spirit — John Rutter
  • Look At The World — John Rutter
  • Sing! — a choral version of Widor's Toccata from Symphony No. 5 arranged by Sir David Willcocks
  • An Irish Blessing — Bob Chilcott
 
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