Ashford Choral Society is one of the longest running societies in existence, with a continuous history of music making since 1857.
Currently there is a membership of around 120 singers who perform three to four concerts each season during the period September to May. Each year the choir has the opportunity to perform some of the major works of the choral repertoire with leading soloists and a professional symphony orchestra.
Music Director, Paul Young, is especially keen to recognise the joy that can come from group music-making for those of all abilities, balancing programmes that present the familiar with less well-known works and to celebrate the repertoire of the great masters whilst providing stimulating challenge.
The new season brings together works from the Baroque to the present day. St. Cecilia’s day of November 22nd is aptly marked by an Ode written by Handel for that feast in 1739, and a work by Benjamin Britten, who was born on the same day in 1913. Handel’s Ode celebrates music and musicians in a delightful collection of arias and choruses. Britten’s St. Nicolas dramatically brings together an array of performing forces (including some pickled boys!) in a more contemporary yet melodic style.
Our March concert focuses upon a Lenten theme with Kenneth Leighton’s deeply moving Crucifixus Pro Nobis for choir, organ and tenor solo. It ends with the familiar text, Drop, drop slow tears. Maurice Duruflé worked in Paris as an organist for much of his life and his works, mostly based on Gregorian Chant, are both Romantic and quasi-Impressionistic. Following a French tradition crystallised in the works of Fauré, his music is at times understated and at others passionate.
Franz Joseph Haydn’s The Creation is a favourite amongst choral societies, soloists, conductors, players and audiences alike. The orchestration is inventive, the vocal writing melodic and uplifting and it contains one of the great choruses of all time, The Heavens are telling.
I am very much looking forward to conducting my first season with the Society in what I hope will be an enjoyable and rewarding experience for all.
If you are a singer and would like to come to rehearsals, with a view to joining, you will be welcomed and given every encouragement (contact Virginia Brown, The Secretary at firstname.lastname@example.org).
Our singers, Patrons and audiences come not just from Ashford but all over the Weald, Romney Marsh and the coastal areas so do come and join us.
Annual Subscription 2019/20: £ 96
Students and anyone under 25
on 1st September 2019: FREE