This is the time of year when your committee, in conjunction with our musical director Carlos, starts planning the programme for next year.
A number of issues have to be taken into account. First the dates have to be agreed, avoiding clashes with concerts being staged by other choirs and orchestras, and ensuring that our regular venue is available.
Choosing the music is of course the major task, and less straightforward than you might think. Each year we attempt to add at least one new piece to our repertoire, and finding a work that we have not done before, for which the music is available, which is within our capability, and which will be popular with our audience is always a challenge.
We have to take into account the size and make-up of the orchestra. The orchestra must be compatible with the various works being performed at that concert, be of a size that we can comfortably stage, and which we can afford!
Finally we have to bear in mind what you, the choir members, will enjoy learning and performing. Sometimes we get specific requests, such as Great Opera Choruses, which we shall be doing in 2016 for the August concert.
The big new piece for 2016 will be the Bach St John Passion, which we’ll be performing in May. This is a huge and challenging work, and one which the choir has never tried to tackle in its 40 years. We are now at a level of professionalism that it is well within our capability, but it will require a lot of work, both at rehearsals and at home.
For our Christmas concert in December we have another new work, Stella Natalis by Karl Jenkins. We have all loved performing The Armed Man by the same composer, and I’m sure we shall find Stella Natalis equally satisfying.
It looks like being another great year!