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French Impressions: An Evening of French Choral Music

An evening of French choral music featuring the rarely performed Poulenc Gloria with its distinctive style of harmony moving between dissonance and lush chord progressions and a colourful musical palette being used to express a wide range of emotions from lyrical serenity to unashamed glee. The choir is joined for these performances by Adrian Bawtree and Helen Crayford and vocal soloists Helen Vincent (Canterbury Cathedral choir) and Joseph Morris (Royal Holloway Choral Scholar).

French Impressions: An Evening of French Choral Music

Lili Boulanger's Hymne Au Soleil is perhaps reminiscent of an impressionist painting, Claude Monet’s painting Sunrise. The rich, sometimes blurred harmonies of Boulanger’s piece evoke the colours of Monet’s clouds, while the ostinato quarter notes throughout the piece suggest the infinite waves that envelop the harbour in the painting.

Like his fellow Frenchman Fauré, Duruflé intended the mood of his Requiem to be largely contemplative, though there are moments of fire and brimstone too, not least when it is performed in the original version for choir and full symphony orchestra. The superb setting of the Requiem Mass by organist and composer Maurice Duruflé mixes Gregorian chant and splendid harmonies, to make what is without doubt, one of the most moving religious works from the 20th Century.

Following graduation, Stephen Barker studied for a Post Graduate Certificate in Education and qualified as a secondary teacher of Music. Composition remains an enjoyable passion, and while not having the time to be particularly prolific, Stephen tries to write two or three significant pieces a year, along with a wide range of smaller pieces of music suitable for liturgical use. Much of his music is available on his website.

Canterbury Cantata, with around 26 singers, is the chamber choir of Canterbury Cantata Trust, a charity whose guiding principle of Caring through Singing supports the creation of singing groups for many around the country.

Event date:
Saturday, 16 March 2024 - 7:00pm to 9:00pm

Ticket Prices:
Students £5, Full price £15

Tickets on the door or available online here.

Canterbury Cantata Trust

Canterbury Cantata Trust Registered in England and Wales
Company No. 8293466 (Limited by Guarantee)
Registered Charity No. 1163197.

Registered Office:
April Cottage, Cherville Lane,
Bramling, Canterbury,
Kent. CT3 1LZ