Mahler 8 closes another Festival

Yesterday saw the final Usher Hall concert of the 2018 Edinburgh International Festival. And what a night! Daniel Harding and the Swedish Radio Symphony Orchestra did a fantastic job showing the somewhat softer side of Mahler’s “Symphony of a Thousand”. On stage with them were the Edinburgh Festival Chorus (who invited me to join them), the National Girls Choir (part of NYCoS) and 8 fantastic soloists.

The performance offered a variety of subtle times and immense power that earned audible gasps from the audience. It’s a stellar piece and it was great to be part of it. Quite a send off for chorus’s fearless leader, Christopher Bell (of NYCoS fame and now making a storm in the USA). I look forward to the chance to sing in one of his choirs again at some point in the future.

A few folk were good enough to give us 5 star reviews as well!

⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ Ken Walton

Photo copyright The Scotsman

Belshazzar Feasts Again

Wow, this is very cool! I was invited (with a group of singers from the National Youth Choir of Scotland) to sing Belshazzar’s Feast in Edinburgh’s Usher Hall with the Royal Choral Union.

This is a huge privilege and I am very excited about singing again, it has been so long since my work has let up enough to squeeze in any rehearsals.

When I got the information regarding the concert I was overjoyed – they want us to sing the semichorus! The semichorus is a small group of singers who, in a couple of places, accompany the Baritone soloist without the choir. I was so keen to participate that I actually practiced! Unheard of 🙂

Please come alng if you can – details are at the Usher Hall website.

NYCoS 10th Anniversary

Sunday marked the National Yout Choir of Scotland’s 10th anniversary Gala concert. I was invited to sing as a member of the alumni of which there ae now quite a few.

After many long rehearsals over in Glasgow (though I swear we were told they would be in Edinburgh) the concert went very well indeed. The crowd were very responsive, though a tad keen and insisted on apploading between movements of Bernstein’s Chichester Psalms and Poulenc’s Gloria.

After the concert was a Dinner and Ceilidh to mark the occasion. This was unfortunately what ruined the evening for me.In true NYCos style they insisted on parent style dictating and in this instance told us that no partners were invited. Clearly I was a tad unimpressed at this peculiar edict and so left early to go home to my wife. It gave me enough time to say bye to some of my good friends in the group. Of course, being on a Sunday night, very few of them could make it – we all have work now NYCoS, perhaps next time it could be on a more practical night.