£31,000 funding for special Sheringham and Cromer music works

Just Regional
Mar 5, 2013 2 mins read

Sheringham and Cromer Choral Society has today announced its delight at being awarded £31,110 by Arts Council England towards the costs of commissioning and performing a major new choral work.

Renowned composer and former Classic FM composer-in-residence Patrick Hawes, who lives in North Norfolk, will create the piece to be performed for the first time in 2014 to commemorate the centenary of the outbreak of the first world war.

The composition will be based on Edith Cavell’s own notes and annotations in her personal copy of Thomas a Kempis’ Of the Imitation of Christ, and will be large-scale choral work with solo soprano, chorus, children’s choir and chamber orchestra and organ.

Bob Cumber, from the choral group said: “We plan to have the first performance on Saturday July 12, 2014, in Norwich Cathedral where Edith Cavell is buried and remembered especially on the anniversary of her death/execution in 1915. We are delighted to have the support and encouragement of the Dean and Precentor at the Cathedral as well as the local Edith Cavell commemoration committee. This premiere performance will provide a unique way of commemorating the outbreak of the Great War by recalling the life and faith of Norfolk’s courageous WW1 heroine.”

It is planned that the performers will include the celebrated soprano, Elin Manahan Thomas, and the English Chamber Orchestra. The children’s choir will be provided by students attending the international Britten Music Course at Gresham’s.

Following the premiere performance in Norwich there will be a special performance in St Peter’s Church Sheringham on Remembrance weekend 2014.

During the development process Patrick Hawes will hold a workshop in May 2014 at the Auden Theatre in Holt for adults and schoolchildren. He will talk about the composition process and provide the opportunity for those present to sing some of his newly composed music. Patrick Hawes who is ambassador for The Prince’s Foundation for Children and the Arts is probably best known for composing the Highgrove Suite for Prince Charles’ 60th birthday.

Nathan Waring, Musical Director, said ” This Arts Council England funding makes it possible for us to move ahead with a tremendously exciting opportunity for our choral society here in north Norfolk . As the Society celebrates its 80th anniversary we prepare to break fresh ground. This is definitely a once in a life-time opportunity and we are hugely honoured that Patrick Hawes has chosen to work with us.”

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