Monday 13 November 2023

Highlights of the 2024 Three Choirs Festival in Worcester: but don't just listen, why not join in?

Vaughan Williams: The Pilgrim's Progress - the celestial city - British Youth Opera at the Three Choirs Festival 2023(Photo Dale Hodgett)
Vaughan Williams: The Pilgrim's Progress - British Youth Opera,  Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, Three Choirs Festival Youth Choir, Charlotte Corderoy at the Three Choirs Festival 2023 (Photo Dale Hodgett)

The Three Choirs Festival returns to Worcester next year, from 27 July to 3 August 2024, under artistic director Samuel Hudson, director of music at Worcester Cathedral. The full programme will be released in March 2024, but highlights will include Elgar's The Kingdom, music commemorating 100 years since Stanford's death, premieres of two new festival commissions from Nathan James Dearden and Paul Mealor, and music inspired by the natural world including Bob Chilcott's The Angry Planet, and Sarah Kirkland Snyder's Mass for the Endangered.

Besides simply going and listening, there are many ways to get involved with the festival with opportunities to volunteer, auditioning for the Three Choirs Festival Chorus, joining Three Choirs Festival Voices or Three Choirs Festival Youth Choir, or performing on the Bandstand. 

The Three Choirs Festival Chorus is drawn from auditioned singers in and around Gloucester, Hereford and Worcester, with the largest contingent each year coming from the host city. Amateur choral singers have been taking part in the festival since the middle of the 19th century to augment the cathedral choirs of boy trebles and male altos, tenors and basses. In 2010, the Three Choirs Festival Youth Choir was established for singers aged 14-25, and the choir made a terrific contribution to this year's performance of Vaughan Williams' Pilgrim's Progress [see my review]. The Three Choirs Festival Voices is new for this year and is open to everyone, with no audition required and a reduced rehearsal period in comparison to that of the Chorus. Find out more at the festival website.

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