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Fri 13 Nov 2015, 7:30pm

Where: Wesley Methodist Church, 100 13th Avenue, Tauranga, Bay of Plenty

Restrictions: All Ages

Ticket Information:

  • Adult: $27.50 ($25.00 + $2.50 fees)
  • Students: $10.00
  • Door Sales: $27.50 ($25.00 + $2.50 fees)
  • Eventfinda tickets no longer on sale

'The English Connection' presented by the Tauranga Civic Choir.

Well, actually, not really. Two of the composers in this programme are not English.
Charles Villiers Stanford was Irish – born in Dublin, and William Mathias was Welsh.
Also Ralph Vaughan Williams was almost Welsh. He had a Welsh name but was born in Gloucestershire – just over the Welsh border. But they did spend most of their working lives in England, so we guess that they are OK to call English.

English music is sometimes regarded in certain circles as somehow not quite the real deal by members of the classical music fraternity. They complain that it is frivolous, light weight (read Gilbert and Sullivan), and not on a par with the best from the Continent. So, we at the Civic are going to prove these music snobs wrong. The English Connection is an exciting programme, filled with drama, variety, depth and musical excellence.

And it's not just us. Soprano soloist Hannah Kim, Timothy Noon, Organ, and Bill Stoneham, trumpet, are joining us with music from Henry Purcell (1659-1695), Jeremiah Clarke (1674-1707), John Stanley (1712-1786), Edward Elgar (1857-1934), William Mathias (1934-1992), Ralph Vaughan Williams (1872-1958) to complete and add to a compelling presentation of superb English music that includes our choral offerings by Charles Villiers Stanford (1852-1924) and John Rutter (1945-). This line up of musical talent across the centuries, includes child prodigies; an organist to the Chapel Royal; two knights, a master of the Kings music who spent almost all his life almost blind due to an accident; one called “the most gifted composer of his generation”; a paid church organist at age 11; the composer of the anthem sung at the wedding of Prince William and Catherine Middleton; another whose pupils included Gustav Holst. They all have one thing in common – their music was aimed at the English market. A paradox is that Rutter, a most English of composers, is immensely popular in USA, and not quite so well accepted in his homeland.

You will hear Rutter's and Stanford's lovely melodies and harmonies, in the two Magnificats, thrill to the ageless Trumpet Voluntary from the Suite in D major by Clarke and Purcell’s Tune and Air, enjoy Vaughan Williams beautiful treatment of the Welsh hymn tune Rhosymedre, swoon to the delicious lilting melodies in Elgar's Salut d'Amour, be jerked awake by Mathias' stirring Processional, and uplifted by Stanley's Trumpet Tune.

This is a concert for everyone. If you need to be convinced of the quality of English music – you will be. If you just want an evening full of every musical mood from pastoral to pomp and ceremony, don't miss this one off Friday concert.

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