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We are a well balanced choir made up around 90 mixed voices. Our concerts are usually performed in the St Dunstan’s Church in Cranbrook which can sit an audience of approx 400 people. We meet for rehearsals from September through to June with our main concerts in November and in the Spring. We have also introduced a Summer concert which is lighter in content and less formal, including local schools or other choirs, and a highly successful Christmas Concert made up of wonderful Christmas music, informal readings and rousing brass to accompany the audience carols. Our concerts are generally accompanied by the Cranbrook Sinfonia which is mainly made up of local professional players who come together to support the choir in its performances.
THE BACKGROUND TO THE CHOIR
Occasional choral concerts have been staged in Cranbrook since Victorian times, but these were put on a more regular footing in the 1950s by Mrs Russell-Scott, wife of the headmaster at Cranbrook School and comprised mainly of ladies from the WI.
In 1969 the group was formed into the present society with over 70 members under the baton of Dr Julian Tower. It presented many of the greatest works in the choral repertoire, mainly Oratorios, Masses and Requiems and attracted soloists who have gone on to the very top of their profession.
In 1987, the Director of Music at Cranbrook School, Malcolm Riley, came to the podium. Under him the choir went from strength to strength both in its number of singers and in the ambitious works undertaken. His leadership came to an end in April 2012 and the choir was delighted to welcome Jeffrey Gray as our Musical Director. The choir has continued to flourish and grow in confidence over the past 12 years under Jeffrey’s directorship, even through difficult Covid times and we were sad to see him leave in December 2023. We are delighted to have welcomed Francesca Massey in January 2024 to continue his wonderful work.
Leading soloists continue to grace our performances, none of them more prominent than our former President, Philip Langridge, who gave us inspirational support and is sorely missed but we are thrilled that his son Stephen is now our president.
We are usually accompanied by the Cranbrook Sinfonia.
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