Haileybury’s singers have enjoyed a very high profile this year, largely thanks to the Chamber Choir’s competitive successes in the BBC Songs of Praise School Choir of the Year and the BBC Radio 3 Choir of the Year competitions.
However, the sound of the full Chapel Choir has been captured in the Chapel’s unique acoustic in its latest CD release. Conducted by Director of Music, Peter Davis, and accompanied by Derek Longman on the school’s outstanding Klais organ, the recording focuses on French religious choral music by Fauré, Duruflé and Langlais.
The CD opens with a full performance of Fauré’s much-loved Requiem, with pupil soloists Sophie Baird (soprano) and Ben Rowe (baritone) in the spotlight and additional accompaniment from Head of Strings, Peter Stacey (violin), and Laurette Pope (harp). The recording then moves on to more meditative a capella repertoire in the shape of Duruflé’s Four Motets on Gregorian Themes. The CD concludes with a powerful performance of Langlais’ Messe Solennelle, full of pungent Gallic harmonies and dramatic liturgical writing.
Peter Davis hopes that CD will win wide acclaim nationally, following in the footsteps of the choir’s last CD which was hailed by Cathedral Music magazine as "an ambitious and eclectic programme…given a really stirring performance". The recording has certainly found favour within the school community, and in the words of one proud Haileybury parent, "it does not sound like a school choir at all – I could have been listening to Radio 3."
CDs can be ordered from the Haileybury School Office on 01992 706205, or from the Music Department on 01992 706264.