A visit to a Kentish village in May

The University Chamber Choir (pictured) and members of the String Sinfonia travelled to the picturesque village of Hernhill, in Kent, last Friday to perform The Agony and The Ecstasy to a packed audience in the twelfth-century church on the village green.

Set amidst the rolling orchards and fields of rural Kent, the countryside was filled, on a perfect summer day, with choral music ranging across the centuries, from Tudor polyphony to a modern Lenten motet by composer Sarah Rimkus, with at its heart the dramatic Stabat Mater by a youthful Pergolesi, completed shortly before the composer’s tragically early death. Assistant conductor, second-year Matt Cooke (pictured in rehearsal), also led the Choir in music by Rachmaninov and Passereau.

The audience at St Michael’s church responded with enthusiasm and rousing applause at the conclusion of the performance, and we’re delighted that the retiring collection, in support of the church’s much-needed renovation funds, raised close to £500.

Thanks to all the performers and to everyone involved; the Chamber Choir is back on Tuesday 29 May, when it will sing Choral Evensong at Canterbury Cathedral, and the String Sinfonia will perform next on Thursday 7 June as part of the annual Summer Music Week festival at the University; more details here.

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