Launch Time for New CD
Friday 1st June, 2012 - 9:42am
By: ROBERT PENTREATH.
Hundreds attended the ‘Launch-time Concert’ for the mighty Mousehole Male Voice Choir’s new CD at Penzance on Sunday (May 6) when they were also hosts to their friends from Worcester who were enjoying a Cornish tour.
Before the concert at Chapel Street Methodist Church a large screen with pictures of Mousehole and the choir, together with a sound loop, brought the music of ‘From Cornish Cliffs’ to the audience. It comprises 16 songs, including several from recent seasons and the theme song composed by conductor Stephen Lawry and Jo Hems.
The CD, which has already been rated their ‘Best Ever’ in over a half-century of recording, was in great demand after the concert and a copy was presented by chairman Reg Osborne to the guest choir who brought 100 singers and supporters on a singing tour that included Lanhydrock, the Eden Project as well as at Carbis Bay on Saturday with the Penzance Orpheus Ladies choir again under the baton of Stephen.
With Nicholas Wright conductor and Sheila Leatherland accompanist, the over 50 Worcester men, celebrating their silver jubilee, provided many highlights to the |Penzance concert including the ‘African Prayer’, Moon River’ and a delightful arrangement of the ‘Sunset Poem’ from ‘Under Milk Wood’ by Dylan Thomas, linked to readings from the work.
The Welsh poet was wed just 100 yards from this Methodist chapel at Penzance during his stay at Mousehole in the 1930’s.
The host choir, well over 60 strong, again gave proof of their quality and resonance in this large building, particularly with a sterling performance of Schubert’s Sanctus and an ‘echo’ from the previous day’s FA Cup final with Liverpool’s anthem ‘You’ll Never Walk Alone’.
With accompanist Annette Turton the choir a busy few weeks ahead with programmes at Penzance Roman Catholic Church (May 18), their Midsummer Concert at Paul church (June 24) and the Summer Festival at St Mary’s Church, Penzance (August 5).
And the choir has been invited to take part in ‘Cornwall Celebrates the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee’ at the Hall for Cornwall on Saturday June 2, with Four Lanes choir and guests including Alastair Taylor, Ben Hoadley, Sid Mitchell, Jack Callow and Matthew and Charles Secombe.
“I can scarcely recall a time whn so much music was being made in and by our local community” said compere and choir patron Douglas Williams. There was even another concert at St Mary’s church, 50 yards away, that very night!
Penzance orchestral and operatic societies, one for over a century and the other 85 year old this year, were thriving and the Penzance Choral Society, also over 100, was presenting Verdi’s great ‘Requiem’ at Chapel Street on Friday May 11.
Popular Penzance tenor Peter Ferris, now of the Glyndebourne Opera, would be the guest of the massed Cornwall Symphony Chorus of mixed voices at St Just on June 30, community choirs were flourishing throughout the area and famed baritone Ben Luxon was back ‘on song’ in the county in the musical ‘Tin’ this month.
“What a wonderful world of music we enjoy,” added the chairman. The Worcester and Mousehole choirs combined for a magnificent finale with the traditional ‘Morte Criste’ and the splendid ‘With Cat-Like Tread’ from the light opera ‘Pirates of Penzance’ that brought an ovation from the audience.