Meet Ely Consort: the local chamber choir who are performing at Ely Cathedral

PUBLISHED: 12:22 04 March 2020 | UPDATED: 12:22 04 March 2020

Ely Consort will perform at Ely Cathedral on Saturday March 21. It's members are pictured during previous performances and out about in the city. Picture: NICK BARTON

Ely Consort will perform at Ely Cathedral on Saturday March 21. It's members are pictured during previous performances and out about in the city. Picture: NICK BARTON

Archant

Ely Consort will perform at Ely Cathedral on Saturday March 21.

Ely Consort will perform at Ely Cathedral on Saturday March 21. It's members are pictured during previous performances and out about in the city. Picture: NICK BARTONEly Consort will perform at Ely Cathedral on Saturday March 21. It's members are pictured during previous performances and out about in the city. Picture: NICK BARTON

Cherubini's Requiem in C minor will be the centrepiece of the performance, which starts at 7.30pm.

It was composed for the re-entombment of the French monarchs at the Basilica of Saint-Denis, Paris, in 1817.

Cherubini was already much in demand as a composer in the capital cities of Europe, and this Requiem enhanced his reputation considerably.

Ely Consort will perform at Ely Cathedral on Saturday March 21. It's members are pictured during previous performances and out about in the city. Picture: NICK BARTONEly Consort will perform at Ely Cathedral on Saturday March 21. It's members are pictured during previous performances and out about in the city. Picture: NICK BARTON

Schumann called it 'unequalled', Brahms thought it 'marvellous', and Berlioz declared it 'the greatest work of its author'.

Beethoven admired the work so much he said it would be his example should he ever write a Requiem of his own; he did not, but Cherubini's was performed at a Mass for Beethoven shortly after his funeral.

The piece is written entirely for choir without soloists, and the dramatic music vividly expresses the full range of emotions in the text.

Ely Consort will perform at Ely Cathedral on Saturday March 21. It's members are pictured during previous performances and out about in the city. Picture: NICK BARTONEly Consort will perform at Ely Cathedral on Saturday March 21. It's members are pictured during previous performances and out about in the city. Picture: NICK BARTON

Other items in the concert include Mozart's well-known Ave verum corpus and Lotti's 8-part Crucifixus.

Music by Gesualdo, Rheinberger and the contemporary Norwegian composer Ola Gjeilo completes the programme, which will be performed with the accompaniment of organ and string quartet. T

The local chamber choir, Ely Consort, is made up of about 40 singers and has enjoyed performing to appreciative audiences in and around Ely for over 30years.

Formed originally as St Mary's Chamber Choir in 1988, the choir has been performing as Ely Consort since 1994.

Drawing critical and public acclaim for their performances, the choir has flourished under the leadership, since 2002, of their present musical director Matthew Rudd.

You may also want to watch:

The choir is formed of experienced local singers and the range of music tackled is vast - from the classics of Bach, Handel, Mozart and Haydn to modern jazz and contemporary works by living composers such as John Rutter, Jonathan Dove and Ola Gjeilo.

The Canadian composer Sarah Quartel recently composed a special commission for the choir entitled "Hope is the thing with feathers" which the choir premiered at Ely Cathedral in 2018.

Regular concert venues include the Cathedral and Ely Methodist Church as well as the parish churches of Burwell and Sutton and recently the magnificent parish church at Lavenham in Suffolk.

Ely Consort regularly ventures abroad on tour and recent visits have included the German Rhineland, two visits to Poland (Krakow and Gdansk) and - coming up this July - Tuscany.

Tickets (£18 / £12 restricted view / u16s free) are available online or in person from Ely Cathedral Box Office.

Become a supporter

This newspaper has been a central part of community life for many years, through good times and bad. Coronavirus is one of the greatest challenges our community has ever faced, but if we all play our part we will defeat it. We're here to serve as your advocate and trusted source of local information.

In these testing times, your support is more important than ever. Thank you.

Most Read

Most Read

Latest from the Ely Standard