Next concert:

Britten: St Nicolas

Haydn: Misa in Honorem Sti Nicolai

 

Sunday 14 May 2017, 7.30 pm

St Dunstan’s Church Mayfield

Mayfield Festival Choir conducted by Jeremy Summerly with London Primavera

 

A Feast of St Nicholas

St Nicholas lived at the turn of the fourth century. Because of his penchant for secret gift-giving, by the 19th century he had morphed into the character of Santa Claus. And while the real St Nicholas had no direct contact with the British Isles, there are a disproportionate number of English churches dedicated to St Nicholas because of the Christian name of the only English Pope, Nicholas Breakspear, the 12th-century Adrian IV.
This concert presents two very different musical responses to St Nicholas. The young Haydn dashed off a mass in honour of  his patron, Prince Nikolaus Esterházy, to be performed on St Nicholas’s day 1772. Always inventive and entertaining, Haydn was never more so that when he was writing at speed. Benjamin Britten, on the other hand, wrote his cantata St Nicolas at comparative leisure, for the centenary of Lancing College in 1948. A colourful canvas of birth, death, prison, a journey to Palestine, and pickled boys, Britten uses his orchestra’s strings, percussion, pianos, and organ to colourful effect. In this performance, Mayfield Festival Choir is joined by a semi-chorus from Mayfield School and the professional Primavera Chamber Orchestra. Britten was always keen that amateur musicians and young people should work side by side with professional musicians in order to keep the professionals on their toes and to encourage the amateurs to up their game. A worthy aim, which continues in Mayfield to this day.

 

Why not make an evening of it in Mayfield?

Mayfield has several excellent pubs and restaurants providing pre-concert food an post-concert drinks.

Pink Cabbage Produce Co. (High St) Will be offering a special pre-concert supper menu at £10 per person. Call the restaurant to make a reservation (01435 872557)

The Middle House (High Street) Serves food on Sundays until 9 pm (01435 872146)

Rose & Crown (at the bottom of Fletching Street) Serves food on Sundays until 6 pm (01435 872200)

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Would you like to sing with us? We would love to hear from anyone who has experience of choral music and is keen to be part of a friendly but ambitious choir, see »Join the choir