On Saturday, 7 July the Rose Choir and orchestra, featuring soprano soloists Jo Howland and Emily Morris, performed a spectacular programme of classical music at the Annunciation Church in Chesterfield and raised £185 for Mary’s Meals.  Fr Roy Panell gave a warm welcome speech before handing over the baton to conductor Jonathan Francis, from Chesterfield Studios.  The orchestra was lead by Emily Sharratt.

  The concert opened with Gloria: Antonio Vivaldi’s most famous choral piece – presenting the traditional Gloria from the Latin Mass in twelve varied cantata-like sections.  This was followed by Hayden’s Waltz – a stunning instrumental piece, written by Jonathan Francis as a gift to his eight-month old son.  The first half concluded with Evening Prayer, by Engelbert Humperdink (1854-1921) and O Sanctissima, written by Robert Prizeman and arranged by Jonathan Francis.

  The orchestra opened the second half of the concert with Canon in D by Johann Pachabel (arr J Francis), followed by the Rose Choir’s uplifting rendition of As Torrents in Summer, by Edward Elgar and W A Mozart’s Laudate Dominum – one of the most lyrical soprano solos the composer ever wrote.  After a beautiful performance of Badiniere, from J S Bach’s Orchestral Suite No 2 in B Minor, the concert concluded with Song of Songs, a captivating sequence by British composer Patrick Hawes.

  The audience showed their enthusiastic appreciation at the end of the concert, with many asking if there would be further such events in the future.  “It was a privilege to perform in such an inspirational setting,” said conductor Jonathan Francis.  “The acoustics really worked to our advantage.”  A retiring collection raised a vital £185 for charity Mary’s Meals.  Local ambassador for the charity, Maria Volpone, said, “This will feed at least thirteen children for a whole school year.  Thank you to all those who contributed so generously to our retiring collection.”

Photographs courtesy of Ian Boler Photography.