Lichfield Cathedral Choir and cathedralchoir.org.uk News
posted: Tuesday, 2 February, 2016
In this, their Diamond Jubilee year, the Friends of Cathedral Music has very generously donated a year's free membership (which will include two editions of their 'Cathedral Music' magazine, and two house journals called 'Cathedral Voice') to the overall winner of our #LentQuiz. The FCM does a wonderful job of supporting the heritage of cathedral music throughout the UK, not least through financial grants; many of the cathedrals featuring in the #LentQuiz will have received grants since the founding of FCM in 1956. The Diamond Fund for Choristers, launched this year, aims to raise £10 million by 2020 to continue their work and establish longer term support through endowments.
posted: Monday, 1 February, 2016
Quizzes for the penitential seasons seem to have become a tradition. This year's #LentQuiz is launched and is an exciting collaboration with cathedrals, abbeys, minsters and Royal Peculiars throughout England. More details can be found at http://www.cathedralchoir.org.uk/lentquiz.
posted: Sunday, 13 December, 2015
Although it has been available for a couple of days already, details of the new CD Inservi Deo which celebrates music written for Lichfield Cathedral and by people with a connection to the Cathedral over the centuries, have been added to the site. It is available exclusively through the Cathedral Shop.
posted: Sunday, 29 December, 2015
At the risk of become a tradition, this year's Advent Quiz - although it is more of a Challenge this time - is launched today. Full details can be found here, and the first challenge will appear on the page and be tweeted at 8.00am on December 1.
posted: Monday, 7 September, 2015
Deatils of three CDs which have been released by Griffin and Priory and include tracks from historic recordings from Lichfield have been added to the Discography: Organ Music from 23 British Instruments, Recorded in the 1960s, featuring two tracks played by Richard Greening; Twice Were Angels, featuring solos by Daniel Norman; and Favourite Psalms from Great Cathedrals, featuring three psalms from Lichfield. Sound clips have been added to all the tracks from Lichfield along with links to details of the original recordings, and all of these CDs (or individual tracks) are currently available to purchase via the relevant links.
posted: Friday, 24 July, 2015
A news item at this point in summer can only mean that the annual update to the personnel listings has been made to reflect the membership of the choral foundation for the forthcoming academic year.
posted: Tuesday, 17 March, 2015
2015 is the year in which we are celebrating at least 700 years of the Choral Foundation in a recognisable form at Lichfield Cathedral. he Choral Foundation is simply the body designed to put forth the music of Lichfield Cathedral and the earliest surviving mention of the foundation is documented when Bishop Walter de Langton gave the Vicars' Close to the Vicars (housing for the gentlemen who sang in the choir) in 1315. We will be celebrating with a host of events commencing on Easter Monday (6 April) with a choral Evensong reuniting former choristers. The first such reunion whereby Evensong was sung entirely by alumni/ae occurred last Easter Monday and the day was so successful we have decided to try and make it an annual date. We hope that well over 30 former choristers will be singing and if you are a former chorister (boy or girl) and would like to come and join us but haven't yet signed up please contact Cathy Lamb (singing friends and relations also welcome!)
posted: Sunday, 1 March, 2015
The broadcast listings have been somewhat overhauled as a result of the BBC's publication of scanned and optical character recognised copies of the Radio Times from 1923 to 2009. This means that the Choral Evensongs listed are now only those performed by the choral foundation and do not include those performed by, amongst others, the BBC Singers and Eton Choral Courses; these are now listed on the supplementary broadcasts page. The other radio and television broadcast pages have been updated to include all the other programmes which have featured the choral foundation over the past 90 years. If any readers have any access to recordings - either radio or televsion - which are not in the archives, please do email as we are always keen to try to complete the archive to preserve the material for the coming centuries.
posted: Saturday, 14 February, 2015
2015 is being seen as the celebration of at least 700 years of the Choral Foundation in a recognisable form at Lichfield Cathedral and events commence on Easter Monday with a choral Evensong as a reunion for former choristers. Coupling this with the power of social media having helped us exceed 1,000 followers on Twitter before Ash Wednesday, we are running a Lent Quiz for the forty days of Lent which draws on fifty years of recorded material from the choir.
posted: Thursday, 29 January, 2015
A new 'supplementary' section has been added to the discography which lists recordings which are in some way connected to the music at Lichfield Cathedral but not made by members of the Foundation. So far there are three items: a recording of the Cathedral organ by Adrian Partington and two recordings of the 1789 Cathedral organ which was moved to Armitage Parish Church and has remained relatively unaltered.
posted: Wednesday, 23 July, 2014
As summer is well under way and the girl choristers are on tour in Rome, the annual update to the personnel listings has been made to reflect the membership of the choral foundation for the forthcoming academic year.
posted: Wednesday, 19 February, 2014
A new CD of the organ played by Martyn Rawles has been released this week on the Priory Label. Full details have been added to the discography, but it is the 87th volume in the Great European Organs series and features a selection of little know transcriptions of orchestral works. It is currently available from the Cathedral Bookshop which can be contacted by e-mail or on 01543 306150; the CD is currently in stock and can be despatched immediately.
posted: Saturday, 30 November, 2013
Details of the forthcoming broadcast of Choral Evensong on Radio 3 have been added to the site, and the discography has been updated to include the track listing of a CD of jazz and blues inspired organ music, Piping Blues, recorded by former Organist and Master of the Choristers Philip Scriven in 2008 but only just released.
posted: Saturday, 19 October, 2013
To celebrate the 100th anniversary of Benjamin Britten birth in 2013, Lichfield Cathedral's Music Department is putting on a range of events including performances of Noye's Fludde, St Nicolas and The Company of Heaven, a lecture by Paul Spicer and a Song Recital by Bass Lay Vicar, Philip Lancaster. All of the music at the services over the weekend feature music by Britten and full details of all the events can be found on the Festival of Britten flyer.
posted: Tuesday, 27 August, 2013
A transcript of a letter of application to the Dean and Chapter for a Bass Lay Vicarship from January 1844 has been added to the site's archive. The applicant did not get the post.
posted: Wednesday, 7 August, 2013
On 28 September 2013, the Cathedral is running a choral experience days for girls.
During the days the children will learn about life as a member of the Cathedral Choir, participate in choral workshops, sing in Lichfield Cathedral, enjoy arts and sporting activities and receive a free lunch
This is a unique opportunity for girls to experience singing with others, to explore the Cathedral and to learn about life at the Cathedral school.
While places are free, they are limited. To register for one, simply complete the registration form or telephone 01543 306168.
A Choral Experience day for boys will run on Saturday 14 January 2014 and more details will follow in due course.
posted: Saturday, 3 August, 2013
The annual update to the personnel listings has been made to reflect the membership of the choral foundation for the forthcoming academic year.
posted: Sunday, 2 June, 2013
Changes to the way in which the Cathedral produces the online music list have had implications for the music list here, which is why some weeks recently have appeared to be blank. As of today, the usual Music List page will display information which has been made available by the Cathedral as a PDF file, and the archives will continue to be maintained (becoming a combination of HTML pages and PDF files for the technically inclined). However, the change in format means that there may very well be an interruption to the regular Twitter service which sends details of all choral services; this will be restored if at all possible.
posted: Friday, 29 March, 2013
posted: Saturday, 3 November, 2012
After two years of trialling the draft version, the Lichfield Psalter came into use today. It has been professionally printed and bound and copies are available to purchase from the Cathedral Bookshop for £20 (plus P&P, if required) each.
posted: Tuesday, 30 October, 2012
This year's annual Christmas by Candlelight is taking place on Friday 21 December and will be hosted by the writer and comedian, Andy Hamilton.
Proceeds from the event will go towards supporting the choir tour exchange with the Cathedral's link diocese of Matlosane in South Africa.
Publicitiy is just beginning to appear, so be sure of a good seat, contact the Cathedral Bookshop on 01543 306150 for tickets.
posted: Wednesday, 26 September, 2012
In January 2013, the cathedral is running two choral experience days for boys and girls.
During the days the children will learn about life as a member of the Cathedral Choir, participate in choral workshops, sing in Lichfield Cathedral, enjoy arts and sporting activities and receive a free lunch
This is a unique opportunity for boys and girls to experience singing with others, to explore the Cathedral and to learn about life at the Cathedral school.
While places are free, they are limited. To register for one of the January 2013 workshops, simply complete the registration form or telephone 01543 306168.
posted: Sunday, 23 September, 2012
Although the personnel listings were updated in August to reflect the girl choristers becoming part of the choral foundation, today was the day on which years of planning came to fruition and ten girls were officially admitted to the foundation.
posted: Wednesday, 8 August, 2012
The annual update to the personnel listings has been made to reflect the membership of the choral foundation for the forthcoming academic year. As the Girls' Choir becomes part of the foundation in September 2012, the names of the girl choristers have been added and, over time, the archive of former female members of the foundation will grow.
posted: Tuesday, 10 July, 2012
A transcript and scan of a petition dating from 1758 from the Vicars Choral to the Dean and Chapter against the then Organist, John Alcock, has been added to the site's archive.
posted: Monday, 4 June, 2012
The personnel listings have been updated to reflect the installation of three new choristers during Evensong on Trinity Sunday, and the departure from the Choral Foundation of the Rev Paul Lockett. Paul was Dean's Vicar since 1991 making him the longest serving priest in that role since the mid-nineteenth century; he leaves to serve in the Shrine of our Lady of Walsingham and in parishes associated with the Shrine.
posted: Tuesday, 22 May, 2012
The Senior Lay Vicar, Michael Guest, has recently written an article for the Cathedral Friends' magazine about the Cathedral's collection of Barnard part books; the entire article - Another Canon Barnard and The First Book Of Selected Church Music 1641 - is reproduced here.
posted: Saturday, 7 April, 2012
posted: Wednesday, 4 April, 2012
The track listing of the choir's latest CD - Anno Domini - has been added to the discography. The CD is officially launched on Maundy Thursday (5 April) and is available from the Cathedral Book and Gift Shop at 9, The Close (telephone 01543 306150, or e-mail). A cultural and musical exchange with our companion diocese of Matlosane is planned for 2013 and the CD has been recorded to help support the South African diocese and to raise funds for this ground-breaking work. £1 from every CD sold will be donated directly to the diocese of Matlosane and the rest of the profits will help to finance the choir's visit. The CD will retail at £12, but will be available for £10 on the launch day.
posted: Tuesday, 3 April, 2012
posted: Thursday, 22 March, 2012
A short description of the history of the cathedral's prebendaries, entitled A Pious Note on Prebendaries written by the Canon Precentor has been added to the site; it includes details about the historical role of the Lay Vicars, and is reproduced here with permission.
posted: Tuesday, 13 March, 2012
Providing the Twitter feed of details of services at which the choir is singing, and therefore being able to offer a duplicate of the Cathedral's music list on this site, means that the collection of archived music lists is now getting updated regularly. As such, the archive now runs from April 1997 to the end of February 2012 which must make it the most comprehensive searchable collection of any cathedral's music lists currently available online.
posted: Monday, 2 January, 2012
As a useful by-product of providing the Twitter feed of details of services at which the choir is singing, the Cathedral's music list is now duplicated on this site. The information is copied directly from the Cathedral's website so no responsibility can be taken for the accuracy or existence of the information, rather it is a helpful inclusion for people interested in the choir's role in the opus dei.
posted: Friday, 30 December, 2011
Following the BBC's broadcast of Eucharist from Lichfield Cathedral on Christmas Day, details of television broadcasts and other radio broadcasts have been added to the site. The lists are incomplete at present, and if you have any information that needs to be added, please do get in touch by e-mail, Facebook, or Twitter.
posted: Sunday, 25 December, 2011
BBC1's Christmas Day Eucharist is broadcast live from Lichfield Cathedral, and can be watched for the next seven days using iPlayer.
posted: Sunday, 18 December, 2011
posted: Wednesday, 15 December, 2011
Having realised that the Cathedral's Chamber Choir and the Cathedral Chorus have Facebook pages with friends and likes, it seemed necessary to create a Facebook page (albeit unofficially) for the Cathedral Choir so people can 'Like' it too. There is also a link to 'Like' the choir in the top right hand side of each page which shows how many people 'like' the choir: it would be fantastic to see a three digit number in the box before Christmas...
posted: Monday, 21 November, 2011
As a result of changes to the Cathedral website in August 2008, the collection of archived music lists stopped abruptly. However, the data for the period from September 2008 to March 2011 has now been acquired, reformatted, and added to the archive. March 2011 is the cut off date as this is when the Cathedral's website changed hands again and the data is therefore currently, at least, unavailable for archiving.
posted: Monday, 26 September, 2011
In January 2012, the cathedral is running two choral experience days: one for boys aged 6-11 on 14 January, and one for girls aged 9-14 on 21 January.
During the days the children will learn about life as a member of the Cathedral Choir and the LCS Girls' Choir, sing with the Lichfield Cathedral Choir during Evensong, enjoy arts and sporting activities and receive a free lunch; parents will be given a tours of the Cathedral and school.
The 2011 Choral Experience Day was a huge success with over 100 boys and girls enjoying a fantastic day of activities, concluding with a wonderful Evensong in the Cathedral. This is a unique opportunity for boys and girls to experience singing with others, to explore the Cathedral and to learn about life at the Cathedral school.
While places are free they are limited. To register for one of the January 2012 workshops, simply complete the registration form or telephone 01543 306168.
posted: Thursday, 26 May, 2011
Thanks to Colin Brownlee of In Quires and Places, details of a newly surfaced recording of the choristers from 1982, Music to Calm Thee has been added to the discography; sadly I do not have permission to put clips from any of the tracks online. Colin has also been able to provide copies of some of the broadcast choral evensongs which have duly been added to the sound archive.
posted: Sunday, 24 April, 2011
The list of choral evensong broadcasts has been updated to reflect the status of the current sound archive: quite simply, a green dot denotes a broadcast of which a sound recording is held and a red dot indicates a gap in the collection. Any informations about missing broadcasts would be greatly appreciated as it is the ultimate aim to build a complete sound archive of broadcasts to accompany the already complete collection of commercial recordings.
posted: Sunday, 2 January, 2011
Two new resources have been added to the site to start the new year. Firstly, a scanned copy of the 1875 Cathedral Statutes which related to the Vicars Choral can now be viewed here, and secondly the beginnings of a list of all the music written for Lichfield Cathedral or its choir is now available. The list of music is very much a work in progress as there are doubtless pieces missing and errors which have already crept in as a result of personal recollections. If you are aware of any details that can be added or need correcting, please get it touch so the changes can be made.
posted: Monday, 15 November, 2010
The cathedral is running another choral experience day on Saturday 22 January 2011 for children aged between 7 and 12. During the day they will learn about life as a member of the Cathedral Choir (boys aged 7-13 years) and the Cathedral School Girls' Choir (aged 10-15 years), sing with the Lichfield Cathedral Young Voices choir, and enjoy arts and crafts and sporting activities in the afternoon. The whole day is a unique opportunity for boys and girls to experience singing with others, to explore the Cathedral and to learn about life at the Cathedral school.
More information can be found on the downloadable flyer and registation form.
posted: Wednesday, 18 August, 2010
The annual update to the personnel listings has been made in preparation for the choir's return to duty on Tuesday, 7 September with a men's voices evensong.
posted: Monday, 28 June, 2010
Recent changes to the running of the Choral Foundation are now reflected on the relevant Personnel pages. At the end of the Summer term, Philip Scriven leaves his post as Organist and Master of the Choristers to become Organist in Residence at Cranleigh School in Surrey. From September, the choir will be run by joint Directors of Music, Ben and Cathy Lamb. Martyn Rawles will become the Cathedral Organist and be responsible for the cathedral organs. Full details of the changes can be read in a press release issued by the Dean and Chapter on Sunday 20 June.
posted: Monday, 18 January, 2010
A description of the choir's forthcoming tour to New York city has been added to the Tours page, and Philip Scriven writes: "It has been a while since the Cathedral Choir last crossed the Atlantic, and therefore we are very excited about the prospect of spending a week in New York City after Easter. We will be performing in some of the city's most prestigious venues for choral music (such as St Thomas' Church, 5th Avenue and the Cathedral of St John the Divine), and we will be joining forces with members of the New York City Master Chorale in a concert in St James's Church, Madison Avenue. We have also been invited to sing two concerts further afield in Connecticut - one at Christ Church, Greenwich, and the other at the First Congregational Church, Litchfield (with a 't'!), where the choir also sang on a previous tour. In between concerts and services, there will also be plenty of time to enjoy all that 'The Big Apple' has to offer and, all in all, it looks as if this is going to be a tour to remember."
posted: Wednesday, 5 August, 2009
As cathedralchoir.org.uk approaches its tenth birthday a makeover seemed both appropriate and desirable. It seems unbelievable that it was ten years ago that the idea of a choir website was born in the then usual den of creativity: the Queen's Head. Since then the site has grown to include a wealth of information, and the latest addition is the inclusion of audio clips from some of the recordings made by the choir over the past twenty years; I am still trying to seek permission from the various people concerned to include clips from some of the older recordings too.
One very important change in terms of the site is that after recent conversations with the Dean and Chapter of the Cathedral, it must be noted that the site is in no way endorsed by the Cathedral and, at their request, its content must be regarded as unofficial. Nevertheless, this does not detract from the scholarship and research that has gone into the site over the past decade and the information presented here is all thoroughly researched and, to the best of my knowledge, reflects as completely and accurately as possible the history, background and present state of the choral foundation.
posted: Saturday, 29 November, 2008
The discography has been updated to include A Lichfield Celebration!, a new release by Griffin Records of a compilation of tracks recorded between 1980 and 1985, when the choir was under the direction of Jonathan Rees-Williams, and previously released on LP by Abbey/Alpha. The list of broadcast services has also been updated to include the forthcoming broadcast in December.
posted: Thursday, 28 August, 2008
The personnel listings have been updated to show details of the choral foundation for the forthcoming academic year.
posted: Thursday, 15 May, 2008
posted: Friday, 7 December, 2007
Priory Records have re-released two recordings on CD which were originally released on the alpha label. The recordings they have released date from 1981 and 1988 and the full details are available in the discography.
posted: Saturday, 3 November, 2007
The list of broadcast services has also been updated to include the most recent broadcast in October.
posted: Tuesday, 14 August, 2007
The personnel listings have been updated to reflect the members of the choir over the forthcoming academic year.
posted: Saturday, 28 April, 2007
The Lay Vicars' personnel listings have been updated to reflect recent changes in the choir.
posted: Sunday, 24 September, 2006
The new CD of Joseph Jongen's Mass, and Flor Peeters's Missa Festiva made by the Cathedral Choir and the Cathedral Chamber Choir, entitled Belgian Choral Works was launched last week. The full details have been added to the discography.
posted: Monday, 4 September, 2006
The personnel listings have been updated to reflect the members of the choir over the forthcoming academic year. A list of forthcoming concerts and recitals is now included at the head of this page.
posted: Monday, 29 May, 2006
The tours page has been updated to include the choir's recent weekend trip to Holland.
posted: Saturday, 7 January, 2006
posted: Sunday, 18 December, 2005
posted: Sunday, 27 February, 2005
The Cathedral Choir has been invited to sing the opening recital of the 2005 Concert Series in Frankfurt Cathedral on March 11th. The programme will include works by Tallis and Sheppard, as well as Grieg, Mendelssohn, Brahms, Britten, and Tippett (who was born 100 years ago this year).
The list of current personnel has been updated to reflect a couple of changes during the year, and the list of Radio 3 broadcasts has been updated to include the forthcoming broadcast this Wednesday.
posted: Monday, 6 December, 2004
Two new CDs, one of the Cathedral Choir singing music for Advent and Christmas called Angels Rejoice!, and one of Philip Scriven playing the Cathedral organ called Piping Hot were recorded earlier this year and have now been released. The discography has been updated to include cover images and complete track listings.
posted: Wednesday, 8 September, 2004
posted: Thursday, 20 November, 2003
The list of broadcast choral Evensongs has been updated again and now lists services going back to 1944. There are periods such as June 1948 where Evensongs were broadcast weekly for four weeks, and February 1946 when there were three consecutive broadcasts. As mentioned previously it is the aim to get copies of all broadcasts before 1983 for the Cathedral Library; if anyone has recordings that they would be willing to loan for transferring to CD, please e-mail email@example.com.
posted: Friday, 24 October, 2003
The list of broadcast choral Evensongs has been updated and now lists services going back to 1979. This list is not exhaustive and any details people can supply about missing broadcasts would be appreciated. It is the aim to get copies of all broadcasts before 1996 for the Cathedral Library and if anyone has recordings that they would be willing to loan for transferring to CD, please e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
posted: Saturday, 18 October, 2003
Having previously said that the discography was complete, an earlier LP has come to light. Although an earlier recording had been referred to in conversation, nobody had been able to provide a copy before now and as such it was omitted from the discography. It was released in 1966 and produced from "tapes supplied by the Organist"; it would appear to have been supported by the Friends of the Cathedral. The image of the sleeve and track listing are now available online.
posted: Sunday, 26 January, 2003
In a large update of the available material, details of former Lay Vicars and Priest Vicars going back to the mid 1800s are now available by following the links at the foot of the relevant page: Lay Vicars arranged by stall; Priest Vicars.
posted: Thursday, 22 August, 2002
The site has been updated to reflect the annual changes to the Choral Foundation, and also this year's new Organist, Philip Scriven, and his assistant, Alex Mason. New photographs of the choir, former choral scholars, and former organists (to accompany their biographies) have also been added.
posted: Sunday, 18 August, 2002
Andrew Lumsden is being installed as Director of Music at Winchester Cathedral during their Evensong on Saturday 14 September, and Robert Sharpe as Organist and Master of the Choristers at Truro Cathedral during their Eucharist on Sunday 8 September.