Introducing Royston Choral Society

  • Posted on: 3 October 2016
  • By: admin

Royston Choral Society (RCS) is a friendly, unauditioned choir of around 70 singers from a wide range of backgrounds and singing abilities united by enjoying singing together to produce memorable concerts.

Follow this link to see details of our next concert.

Some recordings from recent concerts can be seen on this link

Sadly, because of the on-going coronavirus pandemic the choral society is not able to rehearse at the moment. We continue to review that as new advice and guidance is published and will restart as soon as it is feasible.
Details of our tentative plans for the 2020-21 season are available here.

RCS rehearses on Tuesday evenings 7.45- 9.45 in Royston Methodist Church and performs around four times a year in Royston and surrounding villages. New singers are welcome to join RCS by coming along to an open rehearsal.

For more details about the society please contact the chair - Huw Jenkins - chair@roystonchoralsoc.org.uk

The 2019-20 season for the society got off to a great start.

In September we took part in our first concert of the season. This was the Hertfordhsire High Sheriff's Community Choirs concert, held in Haileybury College on September 28th. Sarah Beazley, in her year as High Sheriff, had an idea for a concert that would bring choirs together from across the county to sing together. Music is something that unites us and choirs demonstrate cooperation, inclusivity and the sharing of a positive experience. Sarah wants to have a focus on supporting stronger communities during her term in office, and felt choirs were a good example of this. Nine choirs took part, performing both individually and together in a concert that was a joyful celebration of the power of song and community spirit.

We returned to Haileybury College at the beginning of November for a performance of Elgar's The Dream of Gerontius. The highly acclaimed performance was in collaboration with Haileybury College Chapel and Lower School Choirs, as well as Haileybury Choral Society with the Herfordshire Philharmonia Orchestra. The picture below shows the performers and more pictures from the concert are available here.

Our Christmas concert in 2019 was A traditional family Christmas concert of carols and seasonal music. You can read a review of it and see pictures here.

We were due then to perform Bach's Mass in B minor in March, followed by a lighter summer concert in June. Sadly both had to be cancelled because of the pandemic.

During the 2018-19 season we performed in 4 concerts.

In November 2018 we participated in a performance of Benjamin Britten's War Requiem. Held at Haileybury College, it was in collaboration with the college choirs and Hertfordshire Philharmonia. Here is a photo of the performers:

We usually hold our Christmas concert in Royston Parish Church. In 2018, because of the dreadful fire that had taken place there, this picture shows us performing at the Meridian school instead:

A link to the review of the concert with more pictures and recordings is here.

In April 2019 we performed Bach's St John Passion in Ashwell Parish Church. Sung in the original German, the soloists included Daniel Joy as the Evangelist and Lukas Kargl as Jesus.
See more pictures and read the review here.

Our final concert of the season was in Barkway Parish church, which turned out to be a wonderfully cool location on what was one of the hottest days of the year.
Entitled Songs of Love, it included music by Schubert, Lauridsen, Alexander L'Estrange, Brahms and the society's own Richard Prince. You can read more about it and see further pictures here.

The choir usually also enjoys one or two social evenings a year, usually involving food and drink. We ended the season by having a barbecue on the Heath in Royston. It also turned out to be one of the more energetic social evenings with many members enjoying a fairly relaxed game of rounders. Some of the more competitive are seen here enjoying a game of croquet

Musical Reflections - Suzanne Knowles

  • Posted on: 2 October 2020
  • By: huw

RCS Soprano Suzanne Knowles writes.....

As probably the longest-serving member of the Royston Choral Society, apart from Dick Prince, since joining in 1979, I thought I could let you know some of my choice of music for that desert island as well as recount other musical memories.

Bach’s Christmas Oratorio I think the opening overture and first chorus is the happiest piece of music ever.

Singing Notes - Cynthia Pike

  • Posted on: 2 October 2020
  • By: huw

Cynthia Pike, one of the altos in the choral society, talks about some of her musical memories and loves.

Name three of your favourite pieces

Pie Jesu – Gabriel Faure
Wonderful tonight – Eric Clapton
Anything by Richard Prince [Cynthia’s husband – ed]

What is your earliest memory of music in your life?

Singing hymns at primary school

What was your first 'public performance' of music/ drama/ or both?

Being a shepherd and playing a recorder solo at school!

Peter and Linda's Desert Island Discs

  • Posted on: 27 September 2020
  • By: huw

The Royston Choral Society includes a number of singing couples who share a love of music as well as each other; indeed, some came together through music. Partners often encourage each other with practice and attendance at rehearsals; it would be interesting to be a fly on the wall if they were cast away together! Below, Peter Harris shares his Desert Island selection, and Linda adds her own particular favourites at the end.

Your Desert Island Discs

  • Posted on: 22 June 2020
  • By: huw

Who hasn’t thought what music they would chose if cast away on a remote island by BBC Radio 4? If you haven’t, now’s the time and there’s lots of inspiration to be had from the pre-thinking of other mere mortals like us.

These are the hands

  • Posted on: 22 June 2020
  • By: huw

This song, based on Michael Rosen's poem These Are The Hands, sung by the Commoners Choir celebrates the people who do the (often unrewarded) everyday jobs and services that benefit us all, especially during lockdown. Watch it here

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