Carol Concert 9 & 10 December 2015

Carols image...Oh dear, not another Christmas concert – my fifth in a week! However, I am so pleased that I didn’t miss this one. It was excellent –

A carol concert with a difference.

The ‘Sussex Carol’ made a lovely start, and it was good to hear the late Sir David Willcock’s arrangements, attractive and well-known, which made a fitting tribute to him.

Some of the highlights for me were the wonderful calm atmosphere created in ‘The Infant King’, particularly with the word colouring on ‘piercing’ and ‘gladsome’; the lovely unaccompanied verse in ‘Unto Us Is Born A Son’; the beautiful controlled balance in ‘Away In A Manger’, and the good contrasts of ‘Ding Dong, Merrily On High’.

Innovation in the programming came in the form of Will Todd’s jazz versions of three carols, with interesting arrangements, beautiful interweaving of the voices and an exciting climax to ‘In The Bleak Midwinter’. In the last section, featuring Will Todd’s own carols, we heard beautiful balance and softly controlled voices.

Variations to the choral programme were achieved by congregational carols, an organ solo featuring numerous registrations and effects played by David Davies, and the Exeter Brass ensemble, who successfully took traditional carols and added variations to create a delightful arrangement.

This is a choir of well-balanced voices, producing beautifully controlled soft singing, which is quite an achievement in such a large choir, and most professional.

So congratulations to you all, and particularly to your conductor, Andrew Millington.

Anne Brown

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