Celebrating the 65th anniversary of HM Queen Elizabeth II’s accession to the throne with the magnificent music that helped make her coronation remarkable, the Australian Chamber Choir presents the majestic A London Coronation, which journeys from Melbourne to regional Victoria through March and April.
The program is a treasury of English choral music from the last five centuries with compositions from William Byrd and Orlando Gibbons through to Charles Villiers Stanford, Herbert Howells, R. Vaughan Williams and William Walton. Alongside Charles Villiers Stanford’s beautiful Gloria in Excelsis is the jewel in the program’s crown, Handel’s Zadok the Priest. Commissioned for the coronation of George II, this has been sung at every coronation since.
Charles Hubert Parry’s I was Glad – written for the Coronation of King Edward VII in 1911 was more recently heard as the processional anthem at the Westminster Abbey weddings of Charles, Prince of Wales to Diana, Princess of Wales and of their son, Prince William, Duke of Cambridge to Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge (Kate Middleton).
The Scots’ Church in Collins Street is particularly apt for this celebration since Queen Elizabeth attended services here during her Melbourne visits in 1963 and 1981. The ‘phenomenal’ sound of the choir will be enriched by the church’s magnificent Rieger organ, an ensemble of brass, and timpani.
A London Coronation Program:
• George Frideric Handel (1685–1757) Zadok the Priest
• Charles Hubert Parry (1848–1918) I was Glad
• Orlando Gibbons (1583–1625) O clap your hands
• William Byrd (c.1539–1623) I will not leave you comfortless
• Herbert Howells (1892–1983) Behold, O God
• R. Vaughan Williams (1872–1958) Sanctus, O taste and see
• William Walton (1902–83) Te Deum Laudamus
• Charles Villiers Stanford (1852–1924) Gloria in Excelsis
The ACC is the only Australian choir with a regular international touring program. During its first ten years, the choir has averaged ten engagements per year in Europe with concerts in Germany, Denmark, Poland, Austria, Switzerland, Italy and France. Established by Douglas Lawrence and his wife, Elizabeth Anderson in 2007, the choir has performed widely throughout Victoria and sung in Sydney, regional NSW and Canberra.
A London Coronation
Christ Church, 8 Mostyn Street, Castlemaine
Performances: Saturday 25 March 2017 – 2.30pm & 6.00pm
Church of the Resurrection, Corner of Mt Macedon Rd & Honour Avenue, Macedon
Performance: Sunday 26 March 2017 – 3.00pm
Scots’ Church, Corner of Collins & Russell Streets, Melbourne
Performance: Sunday 2 April 2017 – 3.00pm
St John’s, King Street, Flinders
Performance: Sunday 11 June 2017 – 3.00pm
For more information, visit: www.auschoir.org for details.
Image: Australian Chamber Choir – photo by Emma Phillips