Sunday, 23 September 2018

Royal Free Singers: Magnificat - an evening of music by Bach

Bach Magnificat and Advent Cantatas

Saturday, 1st December  7.30

Windsor Parish Church


The Royal Free Singers, under the direction of their conductor, Ben Gunner, and accompanied on the organ by Luke Bond, Assistant Director of Music of Saint George's Chapel, Windsor castle, are performing three Bach masterpieces associated with the Advent and Christmas season: the cantatas Nun komm der heiden Heiland (Come now, Saviour of the heathens) BWV61 (1714) and Wachetauf ruf uns die Stimme (Sleepers Awake) BWV140 (1731), and the joyous Magnificat BWV243, first performed on Christmas Day in Leipzig in 1733. Luke Bond will also be playing organ works.


Ticket prices:
£15
£1 for under 12s,
£5 for 12-16 year-olds
Special block booking rates for 10+ tickets, if booked in advance.


For tickets:- 
click here to buy tickets

Phone: 07434 626045
Email: linchanan@aol.com
 
Call in: The Royal Windsor Information Centre, Royal Windsor Station, Windsor

Saturday, 5 May 2018

Royal Free Singers 45th Anniversary Summer Prom

Royal Free Singers with Enfield Citadel Band

Saturday 23rd June: 7.30pm

Windsor Parish Church 

From its origins in 1973, when Ben Gunner, then a geography teacher at the former Royal Free Boys School, formed a small choir of staff and parents, the Royal Free Singers has grown to become a 100-plus community choir, serving the wider Windsor area and dedicated to performing the best of choral music, both the familiar and the less well known.
The choir is very pleased to be joined on this anniversary occasion by the celebrated Enfield Citadel Band of the Salvation Army, who will be performing works from their brass band repertoire as well as accompanying the choir in the late Ray Steadman-Allen’s up-tempo Salvationist ‘Age of Rockets’ and in popular prom favourites for audience participation such as Jerusalem and Land of Hope and Glory.  The concert will also include well-loved opera choruses like Borodin’s Polovtsian Dances and the Easter Hymn from Mascagni’s Cavalleria Rusticana, and Fauré’s gentle Cantique de Jean Racine. 



Ticket prices:
£15
£1 for under 12s,
£5 for 12-16 year-olds
Special block booking rates for 10+ tickets, if booked in advance.


For tickets:- 
click here to buy tickets
Phone: 07434 626045
Email: linchanan@aol.com
 
Call in: The Royal Windsor Information Centre, Royal Windsor Station, Windsor

Wednesday, 14 February 2018

Spring Concert 2018 - Durufle and Peeters



Durufle - Requiem

Flor Peeters - Missa Festiva

Windsor Parish Church:  Saturday, 24 March 2018, 7.30 pm


Flor Peeters (1903-1986) was a professor at the celebrated Lemmens Institute music school in Leuven, and for the greater part of his life was organist at Belgium’s metropolitan cathedral, St. Rombout’s in Mechelen (pictured). Other posts held included organ and composition professorships at Tilburg and Antwerp Conservatories. Renaissance music, particularly the school of Flemish polyphony, was a significant influence on his own compositions, including the Missa Festiva, composed in 1947, perhaps the best known of his nine Masses.
 

Maurice Duruflé (1902-1986) composed his 1947 Requiem, opus 9, in memory of his father. Like Fauré he omits the Dies Irae and employs a mezzo-soprano and baritone soloist for, respectively, the Pie Jesu and sections of the Offertorium and Libera me. The music while based on themes from the Gregorian plainchant Mass for the Dead, has a distinctly contemporary, but individual character. Many consider it to be one of the most beautiful pieces of 20th century religious music.

Ticket prices:
£15
£1 for under 12s,
£5 for 12-16 year-olds
Special block booking rates for 10+ tickets, if booked in advance.


For tickets:- 
click here to buy tickets
Phone: 07434 626045
Email: linchanan@aol.com
 
Call in: The Royal Windsor Information Centre, Royal Windsor Station, Windsor

Sunday, 10 September 2017

Song of Mary Workshop

An Afternoon with Jonathan Willcocks...


Sunday October 8th, 2017
Windsor Boys School, 2-5pm

The Royal Free Singers are delighted to let you know about an exciting event this Autumn. We have commissioned a new work from Jonathan Willcocks, our patron, which we will perform at our concert on 2 December.

To help us prepare for this, we have arranged an Afternoon Workshop on Sunday 8 October which will be led by Jonathan himself - and we are inviting others to join us! This will be a unique opportunity to work with a living composer on a completely new piece of choral music. As well as working through the score, Jonathan will also talk about the meaning behind the work and about the musical styles he uses to convey that meaning.

The piece, called "The Song of Mary", uses a variety of texts from different times and sources. It is scored for soprano solo, SATB choir and orchestra. As it has been written with our choir in mind, it will be very suitable and interesting for many other community choirs and choral societies in the future, after its premiere on 2 December.

Be in at the beginning!!

Date: Sunday 8 October 2017
Time: 2 - 5 pm (registration from 1.30)
Venue: Windsor Boys’ School, Maidenhead Road, Windsor SL4 5EH
Main entrance is in Vansittart Road, opposite Oxford Road
Parking available at the School
Cost: £10 Tea & cake provided!!

To book a place, please email the following details to: rfs.comeandsing@gmail.com

Name:


Address:

Telephone:

Email:

Number of Tickets:

Total Cost:

RFS Member? Yes / No (if No, where did you hear of the event?)



Please send your cheque payable to “Royal Free Singers” to Helen Archibald, Secretary, Royal Free Singers, 37 Green Lane, Windsor, Berks, SL4 3RZ.

Willcocks, Beethoven and Mozart

Winter Concert 2017



Windsor Parish Church

Saturday 2 December, 2017


The Royal Free Singers have commissioned a new work with orchestral accompaniment from their patron, the composer Jonathan Willcocks, which will be premiered at this concert. Titled The Song of Mary, it incorporates a variety of Marian texts from different times and sources, including a new setting of the Magnificat.

Each year Prince Nikolaus Esterházy used to commission a new Mass to celebrate his wife’s name day, a function performed for many years by Joseph Haydn until his retirement on ill-health grounds in 1802.

Beethoven's Mass in C was commissioned in an attempt to continue this tradition. Completed in 1807, it includes some of the ideas he was to use nearly two decades later in his 9th Symphony, the Choral.

The concert includes Mozart's Symphony No 35 in D Majoy, K385, composed in 1782 to a commission from the prominent Salzburg Haffner family.

Ticket prices:
£15
£1 for under 12s,
£5 for 12-16 year-olds
Special block booking rates for 10+ tickets, if booked in advance.


For tickets:-
Click here for link to online booking
Phone: 07434 626045
Email: linchanan@aol.com
 
Call in: The Royal Windsor Information Centre, Royal Windsor Station, Windsor

Sunday, 28 May 2017

Summer Concert 2017

The Sprig of Thyme

The Sprig of Thyme, by John Rutter, is a suite of eleven familiar and not so familiar traditional British and Irish folk songs, many covering themes of love lost or found, or betrayal.  They include long-standing favourites as the Willow song and The Miller of Dee and lesser known gems as O can ye sew cushions and The Sprig of Thyme, a 17th century song from Lincolnshire.
Stanford’s Songs of the Fleet is a setting of five nautical poems by the poet Henry Newbolt (1862-1938) who had a particular line in ardently patriotic nautical ballads (perhaps most famously ‘Drake’s Drum’, which Stanford had set in an earlier collection of sea songs, Songs of the Sea.)
Vaughan Williams’ Five Mystical Songs, are settings of poems by the 17th century poet and priest George Herbert from his 1633 collection The Temple: Sacred Poems.  Though an agnostic, Vaughan Williams’ music beautifully complements the religious inspiration behind Herbert’s verses.

Ticket prices:
£12
£1 for under 12s,
£5 for 12-16 year-olds
Special block booking rates for 10+ tickets, if booked in advance.



For tickets:-


Phone: 07434 626045
Click here to buy tickets online
Call in: The Royal Windsor Information Centre, Royal Windsor Station, Windsor

Wednesday, 8 February 2017

Elgar: Spring Concert 2017


Royal Free Singers

April 8th: 7.30, Eton College School Hall

Having already performed his three great oratorios, The Dream of Gerontius, The Apostles and The Kingdom, the Royal Free Singers’ next concert includes two of Elgar’s lesser known but equally memorable choral works.  The concert opens with an early work, the Serenade for Strings in E minor (opus 20), followed by The Spirit of England (opus 80), a setting of poems by Laurence Binyon, written following the outbreak of war in 1914.  Composed between 1915 and 1917, it is his finest wartime music and is both grand and melancholy.
The second half will be a performance of his romantic choral piece The Music Makers (opus 69).  It begins with the evocative lines “We are the Music Makers and we are the dreamers of dreams”.  The music is full of quotations from his earlier works including The Dream of Gerontius, Sea Pictures and The Enigma Variations.  It is like a mini autobiography, reflecting events and feelings from various periods of his life.  

Ticket prices:
£15
£1 for under 12s,
£5 for 12-16 year-olds
Special block booking rates for 10+ tickets, if booked in advance.




Please note there is no parking at Eton College. Those attending this event should note that parking is available in public car parks within the town of Eton and Windsor.

For tickets:-
Book tickets online (click here)
Phone: 07434 626045
Email: linchanan@aol.com
 
Call in: The Royal Windsor Information Centre, Royal Windsor Station, Windsor