Chilcott Come and Sing review

Thursday 31st May 2018
Bob Chilcott come and Sing photo
Bob Chilcott directs his Little Jazz Mass

A dazzling day of music composed and directed by Bob Chilcott.

On Saturday 19th May 120 singers gathered in Regent’s Hall, a wonderful central London venue, to sing music by Bob Chilcott, under the conductor’s baton. They were joined by the excellent King-Cave Collective (Ewan King, piano; Chris Little, percussion; Victor Obšust, string bass), who have played Jazz in many sacred venues including St Paul’s Cathedral here in London.

Bob Chilcott is a highly experienced and natural music leader, motivating each singer to give their best concentration and to sing whole phrases right from the first encounter with a piece of music. This paid early dividends with lovely shaping and phrases well supported (and well tuned). In the morning session after a vocal warm-up we learned The Real of Heart, a touching piece written by Bob in memory of organist John Scott who died in 2015. Then we moved on to the Little Jazz Mass, a vibrant and uplifting work written for a choir in New Orleans (the home of Jazz!) in 2004. The punchy rhythms of the Gloria contrast well the more laid-back Sanctus and moody Agnus Dei.

The singers (aged from 11 up to seniors) who came to sing on this day delivered confident, well-tuned and rhythmic singing. Some already knew the Little Jazz Mass, others learned it on the day. All combined to make a really joyous sound for the audience of friends and family who joined us at the end of the day to hear us sing Be Thou My Vision and the whole of the Little Jazz Mass. We enjoyed stylish and upbeat playing from the King-Cave Collective.

If the date of this Come and Sing rings a bell, that’s because many of us went home directly after the RSCM London event to watch the tv (Royal Wedding/Cup Final)!

Thanks to the RSCM London committee for fabulous teamwork in preparing and running this event.

Alison Fisher,

Chair, RSCM London

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