A belated 250th Anniversary celebration

It is a while since I reported on a concert by Bury Choral Society, but last Saturday’s concert at All Saints Church Whitefield was a delight. The 50 or so members of the choir were beautifully balanced, and responded very positively to the directions of their charismatic Spanish conductor Juan Ortuno, and were ably supported by Elin Rees on both organ and piano, and a string quartet lead by Katie Jankinson.

The concert was a belated 250th Anniversary commemoration of the birthday of Ludwig van Beethoven, who was born in 1770, and sadly died in 1827 at the young age of 57 and, also sadly, became deaf in 1801.

The principal work was his Mass in C major, Op.86, composed in 1807, a really stunning work, which was new to me, and which the choir coped with admirably, ably supported by 4 young soloists – Heather Buckmaster, a delightful soprano, with an excellent range – Helen Anne Gregory, a beautifully rich mezzo-soprano, who complemented the soprano splendidly – Joseph Buckmaster, a powerful tenor, who sang with the Society in Faure Requiem last year, and Armand Rabot, a wonderfully deep young bass-baritone of whom much will be heard in the future.

The first part of the concert comprised a number of works, ranging from excerpts from his opera Fidelio, Op.72, to Sweet Power of Song from 25 Irish Songs, Op.152, which the choir and soloists delivered beautifully.

The last two years have been very difficult for societies such as Bury, but things are gradually getting back to ‘normal’, and last Saturday’s concert was a joy. If you have a voice, and enjoy singing, and fancy having ‘a go’ at choral singing, why not get in touch with Bury? Their web site is very comprehensive.