Haddenham

Witchert Chorale's Xmas Concert

Home » News » Witchert Chorale's Xmas Concert
Witchert Chorale 2016
Hugh Stradling

On Saturday evening 3rd December the Witchert Chorale, conducted by David Quinn, presented another of their popular and always enjoyable concerts at St Mary's Church in Haddenham. The choir has raised in excess of £35,000 over the years for charitable causes. On this occasion funds were being raised for the Society for Mucopolysaccharide Diseases. As the concert was organised by the chorale with the assistance of Haddenham Village Society in various ways, they will also receive a small portion of the proceeds.

The programme was Advent/Christmas orientated. In the first half the choir sang several items, all by Russian composers, which often displayed a warm intensity of feeling and emotional depth. An exception to this, however, was an arrangement of Tchaikovsky's dance of the Sugar Plum Fairy which, in complete contrast, all but drew laughter from the audience.

The second half of the programme was in lighter vein — and the choir seemed more confident and relaxed. Particular mention should be made of an arrangement of 'O Little Town of Bethlehem' (no, not the usual tune at all). Some lovely sensitive singing enhanced with a most pleasing baritone solo by Jon Smith. Also enhancing the choir's performance was Fionnuala Prosser who expertly accompanied two items on the piano. The evening concluded with two well deserved encores.

The programme was shared by accomplished Haddenham pianist Hugh Stradling performing music by Grieg, Scriabin and Rachmaninov. The latter's Prelude in C# minor was perhaps the most well-known to the audience and they were not to be disappointed. The piece takes the listener from gentle serenity to thunderous intensity and Hugh had the audience spell-bound throughout.

In contrast to this Andrew Hardy gave a reading entitled 'Carol Barking' from Laurie Lee's 'Cider with Rosie'. This was as good as anything heard on Radio 4 and, furthermore, Andy was dressed appropriately for the part!

Lastly the audience was invited to sing two hymns, one in each half of the programme. This might have been a damp squib but, far from it, the singing, accompanied imaginatively by the church's fine organ, was full throated and heart-warming.

The audience left in good cheer and the choir left deservedly congratulating themselves on another enjoyable concert.

(A few more pictures appear in our GALLERIES section.)

popular recent storiesAlso in the news

Thames Water Road Works 02
Haddenham Webteam: Mon 15 Oct 9:15pm

Thames Water will shortly be laying new pipe connections in Standbridge Road, just south of the junction with Willis Road. This will mean complete road closure at that section for up to five days:from Monday 22nd until Friday 26th October. The detour will be via Churchway and Aston...

Abbeyfield Guests Exercising
Lindsey McGibbon: Sat 13 Oct 9:00pm

Abbeyfield Residential Care Home for the elderly — do you know we exist?Are you tired of doing your own cooking. Fed up with your own company or are you a friend or relative that has noticed that an elderly person isn't quite themselves or needs a bit of help with their everyday routine. If so, then read on.We are a small 11-bed residential care home on Churchway providing care...

Museum Exhibits 02
Haddenham Webteam: Fri 12 Oct 9:30am

Over the weekend of Saturday 24th and Sunday 25th November the Haddenham Museum Trust will be marking the opening of the village museum to the public twenty years ago.The event will take place in the Methodist Church in High Street, and will be open from 10.00am to 4.00pm each day. The museum will also be open over the same times each day.The programme for the weekend is shown...