Press Release: October 27, 2016
The Cheltenham Bach Choir is to hold a new Singing Competition as part of its ‘Festival of the Baroque’ in March 2017. The aim of this competition is to discover and encourage new young singers of talent and provide them with an opportunity to perform before an audience and a panel of renowned judges.
The competition will be a one day event and is intended for young professional singers of Baroque music up to the age of twenty eight. The contestants will compete for the Cedric Virgin Memorial Prize, named after a long serving member and supporter of the Cheltenham Bach Choir. There will be several cash prizes and the winner will also have the opportunity to perform with the Cheltenham Bach Choir and a professional orchestra.
The Singing Competition will be judged by three well known professional musicians – Catherine Bott, Peter Savidge, and David Crown. It will be held at the Prince Michael Hall at Dean Close in Cheltenham on Friday 31st March 2017. Preliminary rounds will be held in the morning and afternoon, with the finalists performing at a concert in the evening. The public are encouraged to attend; tickets will be available for both the daytime and evening sessions.
David Crown, Music Director of the Cheltenham Bach Choir said “The Singing Competition is an exciting new venture for the choir. It’s aimed at young professional singers of Baroque music from around the country, and will give the audience in Cheltenham an opportunity to hear some of the best of the UK’s newest voices”.
To register for the competition singers should visit the choir’s website www.cheltbachchoir.com .
The Singing Competition is part of the Cheltenham Bach Choir’s Festival of the Baroque, which will run from 31st March – 2nd April 2017. The Festival will also include a performance of Bach’s St Matthew Passion, and a concert of Bach Partitas for violin played by Benjamin Baker. The Festival is supported by the Oldham Foundation.
CONTACT: David Sykes [email protected] (0117 230 3100)
Note for editors:
Catherine Bott spent two years singing everything from Bach to Berio with the Swingles before beginning her solo career. Among her many recordings of baroque music are Bach’s St. John Passion with the Choir of King’s College, Cambridge, Monteverdi’s L’Incoronazione di Poppea with Sir John Eliot Gardiner and Purcell’s Dido and Aeneas with the Academy of Ancient Music. She is a Fellow of the Guildhall School of Music and Drama, an Honorary Fellow of Trinity Laban Conservatoire of Music and Dance, and she writes and presents Everything you ever wanted to know about classical music on Classic FM.
Peter Savidge has appeared regularly with leading opera companies around the world. Equally important has been his concert and recital work, including performances of baroque repertoire throughout Europe with Frans Bruggen and Ton Koopman, and at many of the top international festivals. Peter has performed and recorded with Charles Mackerras, Colin Davis, John Eliot Gardiner, Leonard Slatkin, Steuart Bedford, David Willcocks and Richard Armstrong amongst others; he has also made many TV and radio broadcasts. Peter is a Professor on the Vocal Faculty at the The Royal College of Music in London.
David Crown is Music Director of the Cheltenham Bach Choir, the Oxford Bach Choir, and the vOx Chamber Choir. A choral scholar at King’s College, Cambridge, he then sang as soloist in opera and oratorio, winning several competitions and working with some of the world's foremost musicians. As music director of the Reading Phoenix Choir, David took the choir to the finals of both the BBC Choir of the Year and the Cork International Choral Festival. He was also Director of Music at Somerville College, Oxford, making two critically acclaimed recordings and gaining many accolades for their performances in the UK and abroad.
The Cheltenham Bach Choir (CBC) was founded in 1946. It is one of the foremost choral societies in the South West of England, with a wide-ranging repertoire covering music from the 16th to the 21st centuries. The choir performs regularly in Cheltenham, Gloucester, Tewkesbury, and at venues in the surrounding area. Thanks to its reputation, the Cheltenham Bach Choir has been invited to take part in many prestigious events further afield, including Carmina Burana at the BBC Proms, an Opera Gala in Symphony Hall, Birmingham with the Hallé Choir, and regular appearances at the Cheltenham International Music Festival. It also holds regular exchange visits with the Göttinger Stadtkantorei in Germany. The choir’s patron is HRH The Princess Royal.
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