Andrew O'Brien's Desert Island Discs - March 2019

  • Posted on: 16 April 2019
  • By: huw

Andrew O'Brien joined Royston Choral Society as Musical Director in September 2015 making no concessions in his choice of concert content, to this being an unauditioned community choir. In his first year with the RCS the choir successfully tackled Brahms’ A German Requiem and Purcell’s Dido and Aeneas. In 2016 Andrew became Director of Music at Haileybury School.

Bach St John Passion

  • Posted on: 9 April 2019
  • By: huw

Review of St John's Passion by J.S.Bach, Ashwell Church
6th April 2019

This beautiful piece of work was undertaken by Royston Choral Society and Haileybury Choral Society. In the first part we commenced with the choir giving an accomplished opening singing in the original German text. The singing and diction was clear and built up the excitement of the opening piece with hushed tones when required and strong crescendos.

Britten War Requiem

  • Posted on: 4 November 2018
  • By: huw

In November 2018, in collaboration with Haileybury College Choirs, and Hertfordshire Phiharmonia the choral society performed Britten's War Requiem to a sell-out audience. This picture is from the performance showing the performers. A recording of part of the performance is here

Other photographs include:

Serenade to Music

  • Posted on: 26 August 2018
  • By: huw

The society performed to a very appreciative audience in Barkway Parish Church for their last concert of the 2017-18 season.

The choir sang John Rutter's "The Sprig of Thyme" as well as Vaughan Williams' "Serenade to Music". Lighter items included a couple of spirituals arranged by Ken Burton and "The Seal Lullaby" by Eric Whitacre. We were joined by Alistair Watson on the piano, who also contributed "Toccata in D" by Bach - a wonderful virtuosic display, and the very talented Edward Davies, a student at Haileybury College, who performed Vivaldi's guitar concert in D.

In harmony

  • Posted on: 2 February 2018
  • By: Chris

In the run up to Valentine's Day, we asked five couples who sing together in the choir about their shared love of music and the role it has played in their relationships.

A Christmas Oratorio

  • Posted on: 29 November 2017
  • By: richard

Royston was once again treated to a fine performance of J.S. Bach’s ‘Christmas Oratorio’ at St John’s Parish Church.
Bach composed this masterpiece, comprised of six parts, to be played over six days during the Christmas season in 1734 and into the New Year.
This concert consisted of four sections of the ‘Christmas Oratorio’, performed in one evening and sung in German, (we were given the words in German and English in the programme which was very helpful).
What an amazing feat of organization and dedication!
The performers assembled consisted of:

Music for a summer's evening

  • Posted on: 6 September 2017
  • By: richard

On a perfect English June evening at Holy Trinity Church in the village of Chrishall, set amid the fields, a concert was waiting to take place.
Royston & District Choral Society and Haileybury School musicians treated their audience to a fine selection of works. The audience took their seats and with the summer sun glistening through the church window forming a backdrop to the choir. The scene was set.

Requiem and Lo, the Full, Final Sacrifice

  • Posted on: 31 March 2017
  • By: richard

The large audience at the ancient church of St Mary’s, Standon were taken on a reflective and emotional journey during the RCS Spring Concert. Conductor Andrew O’Brien showed his deep understanding of English choral music and through his inspiring direction coaxed the most exquisite dynamic contrasts from both the choir and the Haileybury Consort.

Handel's 'Messiah'

  • Posted on: 1 December 2016
  • By: richard

‘Congratulations on a stunning performance’;
‘utterly brilliant’;
‘we’ve been attending Messiah concerts together since 1965 – this was the best’
were just a few of the comments from audience members at Royston and District Choral Society’s performance of Handel’s Messiah in Royston Parish Church on Saturday.

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