Bumper year for music at Gloucester Cathedral
2013 looks set to be a bumper year for music at Gloucester Cathedral with even more recitals and concerts performed by Cathedral musicians and supporters.
The popular series of organ recitals, coffee concerts, cantatas and musical tours continue, while a new silent film series will showcase the improvisational skills of the Cathedral’s new Assistant Director of Music.
Many of the events have free entry with a retiring collection, some have a modest charge, but all support the work of Cathedral music, preserving the rich heritage of the English choral tradition.
Highlights of the year will be a performance of Bach’s St John Passion on Palm Sunday performed by the Cathedral Choir and a mini-festival celebrating the 100th anniversary of the birth of Benjamin Britten running from October to December.
It means that the busy Music Department will be performing on average at least one concert per week in 2013 alongside their daily worship in the Cathedral, not to mention performances in the Three Choirs Festival in July and concerts and services in several churches around the diocese.
January concerts at the Cathedral
On Saturday 19 January at 11.00am the first Coffee Concert of the year in the Chapter House is an informal and relaxing piano recital by Charles Timberlake, performing a programme of original compositions. Tickets are £6 to include coffee and biscuits.
On Sunday 20 January at 4.15pm, Gloucester-based professional singers Vicki Barnes-Moffatt and Sebastian Field, accompanied by the Corelli Orchestra, will perform J S Bach’s Cantatas 84 and 35 in the Cathedral Quire for Septuagesima Sunday (third Sunday before Ash Wednesday). There will be three further performances of Bach’s cantatas reflecting the church seasons throughout the coming year. Admission is free with a retiring collection.
Thursday 24 January at 12.30pm brings the first Free Lunchtime Organ Recital of the year, performed by the Assistant Director of Music at Truro Cathedral, Luke Bond. The performance will be projected into the Nave via a large screen giving a bird’s eye view of the organist at work.
On Wednesday 30 January at 9.00pm the new series of Silent Film Nights begins. The Cathedral’s new Assistant Director of Music, Anthony Gowing, is an avid film buff as well as being a highly accomplished improvisational organist. Not many organists in the country would be capable of improvising a film score, so Gloucester Cathedral is delighted to make use of this extraordinary talent.
The first film in the series will be the silent version of F. W. Murnau's “Faust” which premiered in 1926. Murnau's film featured special effects that were remarkable for the time and many of these shots are still impressive today.