Scholars’ Evensong. Tuesday 28 July, 6.30pm
Twenty-one choral scholars, including Michael Burgess, Benedict Dimond, and Ella Venn from our Cathedral Choir, from Church of England Cathedrals across the south west of England have created a virtual Evensong in lockdown to raise funds for the Cathedral Choirs Emergency Fund and raise the profile of the English choral tradition.
It will be broadcast on the Friends of Cathedral Music YouTube on Tuesday 28 July and includes two new compositions; an introit by Paul Mealor and an anthem by Roxanna Panufnik. The lessons are to be read by former chorister and TV presenter, Alexander Armstrong, and the face of BBC Proms, Katie Derham.
The choral scholars, from Bristol, Worcester, Exeter, Truro, Gloucester, Wells, Hereford and Tewkesbury Abbey, hope this project is the start of more regional collaboration digitally and physically, when it is allowed, and they want to use it as a springboard for better working together.
The Friends of Cathedral Music (now the Cathedral Music Trust) and the Ouseley Church Music Trust launched the Cathedral Choirs Emergency Fund to raise £1m to be able to make grants to cathedral choral foundations in need. It came after a survey showed that many choral foundations will struggle without additional funds once lockdown restrictions are lifted.
The Cathedral Music Trust and OCMT have each committed £250,000 towards the target, and the Choir Schools Association (CSA) has now joined the partnership with an equal contribution. The fund now stands just short of £850k.
The Church Commissioners have just lent their weight to the campaign with the announcement they will support England’s cathedral choirs with up to £1.1m available to ease the impact of the pandemic.
The funding will pay the salaries of lay clerks (adult singers) for up to four months from the time it is safe to restart indoor choral services with congregations - it is hoped this will cover Advent and Christmas.
Posted on 27th July 2020