Friday, 14 December 2012

Busy weekend ahead...

Starts with the first rehearsal tomorrow am for our annual service of Lessons and Carols in York's oldest church, followed by a swift dash to Halifax tomorrow eve for a Chant High Mass celebrating the Silver Jubilee of a wonderful priest, Mgr David Smith. He was the first ever Rudgate celebrant back in 1996.

Finally on Sunday morning my conducting 'skills' are being unleashed again on the Darlington Ordinariate Choir as there's nobody else. Palestrina Matin Responsory, de Angelis & Record of John. Could be interesting... ;-)

Monday, 3 December 2012

In quires and places...

Something that I've been intending to do for ages now, is create sets on flickr of all the venues we've sung at, using our own photos where we have them.

The sets can be accessed via the following link, and include such venues as York Minster where we sang the first Traditional Latin Mass since the Reformation, Brinkburn Priory,St Everilda's church, Everingham with it's more than generous acoustic (!) and of course, St Mary's Bishophill Jnr, home to the Schola Cantorum where we sing the Divine Office, and also our main rehearsal venue now in addition to the Annual Carol Service which this year is on Friday 21st December at 7.30pm, so get the date in your diaries, phones laptops etc now!

Here's the URL. You'll probably have to copy and paste it into your own web browser for it to work.

Happy New Year!

And a new experience for me to boot. Conducting a full SATB choir for the very first time. My 'guinea pigs' were the Darlington Ordinariate choir, now based at St. Osmund's church in Gainford, pleasantly situated about halfway between Darlington and Barnard Castle. I can't have been that bad as there were several positive comments on the music afterwards. :-)

We've been busy behind the scenes as always, and preparation is already well under way for the Carol Service at Bishophill later this month. In addition to that, we're already at an advanced stage regarding the music for the next St. Margaret Clitherow Pilgrimage to York, and work is about to begin on the next EF clergy/servers training conference. And there's another tour in August to plan for. This time to Belgium and Luxembourg. To keep in touch with everything we're doing, check the calendar - link on the side-bar below!

Sunday, 4 November 2012

Commemoratio Fidelium Defunctorum - Vespers of the Dead.

In remembrance of those who died in the two World Wars and other conflicts.

St. Mary's Church, Bishophill Junior, York. YO1 6EN

All Welcome.

Commemoratio Fidelium Defunctorum - Vespers of the Dead.

Friday, 21 September 2012

We've been busy...

Which explains in part why nothing's been posted here for 2½ months.

The Requiem at Barnard Castle was marvellous - if you can call such services that, despite losing our conductor at the last minute due to a family bereavement. You can read Fr. Elkin's wonderful report here.

Earlier this month we had a Glorious day at Brinkburn Priory, singing a Monteverdi Mass and motets by Victoria, Guerrero and Michael Praetorius. You can read more about that here. 

The Day after, some of us sang for a Festival Service to dedicate & bless the new Stations of the Cross at Service at St. Mary's Church Bishophill Jnr, where we regularly sing Compline and occasional Vespers. Last weekend Some of us went to Leeds to sing for the 50th Anniversary celebrations of the Greek Orthodox community. 

In between singing regularly for the Ordinariate Parish in Darlington and Compline at St. Mary's, plans have been made for the Carol Service later this year on 21st December - also at St. Mary's. The programme is now complete and initial invitations to singers have been sent! The Mass setting for next years pilgrimage to York in honour of St. Margaret Clitherow  has also been chosen. I've still to work on other polyphony for the day though, as due to the proximity of Holy Week & Easter, we've moved the date for this to 4th May. For those of you who have been before, get it in your diaries now! It would be lovely to go back to York Minster for this, but we'll have to see...

Meanwhile, next week, 3 intrepid chanters are going to Bavaria, Austria & Liechtenstein for a week. Were singing in this church on Tuesday!

Wednesday, 4 July 2012

Another first?

We're getting quite excited about our next service, the Founder's Day requiem at Barnard Castle.
Not only does it promise to be a good sing with some singers joining us for the first time, but we believe that it will be the first ever performance in its correct liturgical setting of the Requiem Mass by Robert Lucas Pearsall, probably better known in choral circles for his adaptation of In Dulci Jubilo and Lay A Garland.
So, if you want to hear a world first, come along to St. Mary's Catholic Church in Barney (literally next door to the  Bowes Museum) on 21st July at 12noon!
Meanwhile, in York, Compline by Candlelight continues on each Saturday in July at St. Mary's Bishophill Jnr commencing at 9pm.

Wednesday, 2 May 2012

May dates

5th May. 9pm. Compline by Candlelight

6th May,6pm. The May Devotions.

12th May 9pm. Compline by Candlelight.
St Mary's Bishophill.

York Minster

21st May 7.30pm. 

St. Mary's Bishophill

In addition. Some of us have been invited to sing for the following events organised by the Darlington Ordinariate. Just click on the link and it will take you there!

If you're a tenor, you will be made very welcome, not just by the Ordinariate in Darlington for the services mentioned in the link, but the Rudgates also need you! In fact, we could do with an extra tenor & alto for the 6th May service in Leeds. Do get in touch via the website or the combox if you're free!

Ascension Day

For those of you within reach of Leicester, this will be well worth going to.

Apologies for the print quality. The original poster is splendid.

Tuesday, 17 April 2012

Compline Returns

For those of you who either live in York, or have reasonable access to it, and who may be interested.
Compline by candlelight returns this coming Saturday at 9pm!

Venue: St. Mary's Church, Bishophill Junior (just off Micklegate/Priory Street)

For more details and regular updates, check the calendar - there's no need to keep asking me!
I look forward to seeing you hopefully either on Saturday, or at some point during Eastertide!

Saturday, 7 April 2012

Fr. Hugh Curristan.

I've just read an news item from the local York Press about this priest who died recently, who was at one time my PP. He was at English Martyrs' church for the best part of 30 years.

Despite his Liberace impersonations(!) he was a good priest, and heroically saved the day for Rudgate's first service in Everingham back in November 1999, when I managed to get myself interviewed by the local BBC and ended up being quoted on page 3 of the Catholic Herald! (If you click on this link, you'll need to scroll down quite a bit to get to 1999, but it's there! We sang Victoria à 6 Requiem, which was wonderful.)

You can read the piece here.

May he rest in peace.

Thursday, 29 March 2012

Some thoughts (& photos) about Margaret

I've just about recovered from the marathon sing that was the 2nd National Pilgrimage to York in honour of St. Margaret Clitherow. From our point of view, it was a success, albeit with one or two blemishes during the Mass, but far less stressful than last year. We even managed to cram all the singers into both choir lofts at St. Wilfrid's & English Martyrs' respectively. Heartfelt thanks to all the singers and Christian for enduring the marathon!

There are some reports about the pilgrimage here, here, here and here!

I'm at one with Fr. Brown regarding the length of the Devotions. At the end of a long and tiring day for both singers and pilgrims, they did seem to be over-long. I remember particularly when acting as cantor for the Litany, turning the page to discover that I wasn't even half way through the invocations! Others thought that walking to English Martyrs was possibly also a step too far and wondered why we couldn't go to the Bar Convent. This isn't unreasonable, especially as the convent was the original venue for Benediction last year, only to be changed because of the expected numbers being far too great for the chapel.

If numbers stay as they are, there's no reason why we shouldn't end there. However, we could very well have more pilgrims from North-west England who were at New Brighton this year which again may make the convent chapel too small a venue.

Next years date may also be a problem. The nearest Saturday to St. Margaret's feast day is 23rd March. This is the day before Palm Sunday, and some clergy (as well as pilgrims and even singers) may not be so keen on a major event the day before Holy Week. I personally would suggest moving the date in this case to coincide with the feast of the Holy English & Welsh Martyrs which falls on the 4th May. Not only is this on a Saturday next year, but it's also Bank Holiday Weekend. Surely this would be better?

There are some links to photos of the day below. I know there are two more sets of pictures to come as well as these, so stay tuned. I'll post the links as soon as I get them!

Wednesday, 25 January 2012

Come and sing with us!

We're having our very first Open rehearsal next month, to see if we can attract some more people to come and join us. The format will be very simple, just an afternoon of singing lots of music we like, (Gregorian Chant, Renaissance Polyphony, the English choral tradition and music for liturgical use in the Orthodox church) with an explanation of the various contexts (always liturgical so far) in which we sing it, followed by Vespers to give prospective new members an idea of 'how it comes together' in an actual service, followed by a chance to get to know us socially.

Simple as that!

Unlike formally established choirs, we're not even going to charge, although we are suggesting a donation of £3 to cover costs.

This will take place on Saturday 11th February from 2.30pm-6.30pm at the oldest church in York, St. Mary's, Bishophill Junior. If you're interested, and free that afternoon, do come along! For further details, contact me via the website.

Sunday, 1 January 2012

Happy New Year!

This is our schedule for January. All welcome!

2nd January
St Mary's Bishophill 6.30pm
Vespers of the BVM

7th Jan:
St Mary's, Bishophill 11am
Orthodox Liturgy
And at 9pm
Compline by candlelight

15th January 6.30pm
St Mary's
Sunday Vespers

21st January 10am
Ampleforth Abbey
Choral Orthodox Divine Liturgy
9pm at St Mary's
Compline by candlelight

28th Jan
St Mary's
Compline by candlelight

29th Jan
Greek Orthodox church of the Three Hierarchs
Divine Liturgy.