After the hugely enjoyable performance of the Coronation Mass, Music Director Martin Palmer moved swiftly on to focus the choir on preparing the Christmas programme for the December concerts to be held at St Piran’s RC Church, Truro, and Eden Project. Along with a beautiful selection of carols, including the Sans Day and Coventry Carol, and a couple of our favourite movements from the Messiah, Palmer also picked the Spirituals by Tippett. A collection of eight-part works, the Spirituals required careful rehearsal and members were very pleased to be able to give a worthy performance of them on 19th December at St Piran’s. Accompanying us were Truro Symphony Orchestra and four impressive young soloists: James Orford, the current TCS accompanist and Truro Cathedral organ scholar; Paul-Ethan Bright and Charlie Murray, who are both members of Truro Cathedral Choir and have performed as soloists with TCS in the past; and Eleanor Sullivan, who not only delighted with her beautiful soprano voice but also gave an exquisite recital of Mozart’s Oboe Concerto.
Another big part of the evening was our decision to be part of CLIC Sargent’s Cornish Christmas Countdown, and a collection was held during the interval and at the end, raising the fantastic amount of £650. CLIC Sargent provide clinical, practical and emotional support to children and young people who have been diagnosed with cancer. Thanks to their work, Cornish families have access to free self-catering accommodation at the charity’s Home from Homes in Bristol, allowing them both to stay close to their child receiving treatment and to stay together as a family. The charity also provides funds for two specialist CLIC Sargent nurses and three social workers across the county to support those affected by cancer at home; in 2013, they were able to help 74 Cornish families. For further information on the charity’s work and how to donate, visit www.clicsargent.org.uk.
The morning after the concert, a smaller version of the choir, the orchestra members and the soloists headed to Eden Project to do almost exactly the same thing all over again, in the relaxed and beautiful setting of the Citrus Grove in the Mediterranean Biome. Listeners perched on low, whitewashed walls by nascent vines or knelt on rugs nearby, and birds once again joined in with the performance – “It was wonderful to hear the music and voices rising up round the biome,” a visitor told us afterwards.
Returning after the Christmas break, we welcomed a representative from CLIC Sargent to our first rehearsal, where we were all delighted to be able to hand over a cheque for the £650 that had been raised on 19th December. And the West Briton and EnjoyTruro.co.uk kindly recorded the handover.
A perfect way to wrap up 2014.