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Stories, Shakespeare and Strawberries - songs by The Manchester Chorale

Saturday July 2, 2016 at 19:30
St Ann's Church, Manchester
£10 full, £6 concession, £3 student
Tickets "at the door" - until sold out
  1. Rouen - Chris O'Hara, words by May Wedderburn Cannan
  2. 3 Chansons - Maurice Ravel
    • Nicolete
    • Ronde
  3. Alice - Sarah Quartel
  4. Wide open spaces - Sarah Quartel
  5. The Seal Lullaby - Eric Whitacre
  6. Sleep - Eric Whitacre
  7. O, mistress mine! - György Orbán
  8. Double, double toil and trouble, from 4 Shakespeare songs - Jaakko Mäntyjärvi
  9. Caliban's Song - David Hamilton
  10. Shall I compare thee to a summer's day? - Nils Lindberg
  11. Shakespeare Songs - Matthew Harris
  12. Pastime with Good Company - King Henry VIII
  13. Jazz folk songs for choirs - Bob Chilcott
  14. Only the moon has secrets - David Hamilton
  15. The blooming bright star of Belle Isle - Traditional Canadian, arranged by Debra Scroggins

The Manchester Chorale likes to have a theme for their concerts and this time they have chosen ‘Stories, Strawberries and Shakespeare’ – an intriguing concoction. An outline of the concert will explain how the theme will be explored.

Stories - Many of the Chorale’s favourites tell a story. Nicolette meets a wolf, then a page, then an ancient, ugly lord and falls for his money – a perfectly formed little song by Ravel. Eric Whitacre’s Seal Lullaby uses Kipling’s tale of a mother seal singing to her pup and overlays it with rich harmonies. Alice is inspired by Lewis Carroll and the Chorale have to sing the story in a suitably mad way: ‘Twinkle, twinkle little bat’! Byrd and Henry VIII may also feature on the night. However, pride of place in our stories goes to the world premiere of Rouen composed by the Chorale’s own Chris O’Hara. Chris has taken a poem by May Wedderburn Cannan, who was a volunteer at the railhead at Rouen during the First World War. She evocatively recalls her mixed emotions as trains were dispatched to the battlefront: ‘the sudden awful silence when the last train swung to darkness’. Chris has matched his music to the changing emotions.

Strawberries - The Manchester Chorale probably won’t be singing about strawberries, but they will play a major role in the refreshments.

Shakespeare - The Chorale has an extensive repertoire of songs by a variety of composers who have set Shakespeare’s words to music. This includes O Mistress mine, Caliban's song (Hamilton), Double double toil and trouble (Mantyjaarvi), Shall I Compare thee to a summer's day (Lindberg) and It was a lover and his lass (Rutter). We will also be performing a selection of songs from the Matthew Harris Shakespeare Songbooks. Some of these even tell a story – two for the price of one.

Tickets for this concert can be reserved here.

St Ann's Church
St Ann Street
M2 7LF
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