The Haileybury Chapel Choir’s CD recording, Were You There, has received a very favourable review from Roger Tucker of the Cathedral Music magazine.
The CD was released by Regent Records at the end of May 2002 and features the Chapel Choir, conducted by Peter Davis, accompanied by Derek Longman, and including organ solos performed by Simon Lascelles and Peter Davis.
The review reads as follows:
"It is a big choir sound to be heard on this disc. Haileybury is nowadays a co-educational, so its chapel choir has girls singing both soprano and alto. The choral tone is strong, greatly enhanced by the superb acoustic of the large chapel, which boasts a spacious apse at the east end – the ideal musical sound reflector. It also now enjoys two great assets: a magnificent new Klais organ, standing on a gallery at the west end and a new director of music fresh from St John’s College, Cambridge, where he was organ student. As regular readers of this magazine will know there can be no better pedigree for fine chapel music making. Of the three organ solos, two are played by Peter Davis – Sun Dance, which is given a particularly rhythmically exuberant performance and Parry’s Chorale Prelude on St Ann which evolves powerfully and includes some impressive pedal fundamentals. Leighton’s Fanfare is played by Simon Lascelles and also generates exciting playing. As I have written before Leighton is a much underrated composer of church music so it is pleasing to have a very spirited performance of his Magdalen Service. Of the spirituals Chilcott’s arrangement of Were you there? is beautifully rendered and makes a good opening track. The well-known Five Negro Spirituals, which Tippett arranged for A child of our time, are very well done and make a nice contrast to the finale to this ambitious and eclectic programme, Parry’s magnificent setting of Milton’s Ode is here given a really stirring performance."