Thursday, August 2, 2012

Singing at The Egg

Home venue
Went to see Christ Church Cathedral Choir, from Oxford, at the Egg this evening. Not something I would normally make a bee-line to, but it's part of UK Now and I was intrigued to see what Chinese audiences would make of 26 male choristers (14 of them boys from the Cathedral school, six undergraduates from Christ Church College, and six professionals) singing Parry, Vaughan Williams, Stanford, Elgar et al. 
With Peter Gabriel in 2009
There are plenty of choirs in China but not in the religious sense, and the evening's programme was entirely secular of course... Anyway, it was packed (and we're talking 1,000+), with a standing ovation following a finale of Double Trouble from Harry Potter and a hastily arranged Chinese folk song.  It genuinely took me by surprise. Was the audience comprised entirely of Oxford alumni? I saw their Music Director and conductor Stephen Darlington afterwards and he was as surprised as me. They're off to Guangzhou and Shenzhen next. Rock & Roll...

Bit of a choral theme this week, what with the convent girls choir in The Flowers of Nanjing last night, reading about Vaughan Williams & Parry in Rob Young's Electric Eden and listening to Bjork's 'Unison' on repeat. I was in my primary school choir. I quite enjoyed it. I once sang so hard  that I fainted and remember being revived by a teacher in the playground. 

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