Friday, 29 April 2016

Exeter Bach Society Music in May Mary Harris Memorial Chapel Exeter Uni Streatham Campus Saturday 7 May 2016 Press Release from Exeter Bach Society Chairman Juliet Meadowcroft

John Pearce
Deputy Musical Director
Exeter Bach Society

Magical Music for a Summer’s Evening

Music in May, the final concert of Exeter Bach Society’s 2015-6 season, is different from the choir’s usual concerts in that, apart from the Finnish songs and Bach chorales, the programme is all English and chosen by the choir’s Deputy Musical Director, John Pearce. He is also the conductor for this performance of anthems, motets, madrigals and part-songs – some even unpublished - in Exeter University Chapel at 7 pm on Saturday, 7 May.

The theme is of this year’s anniversaries celebrating whole or half centenaries, ranging from pieces by John Sheppard (born 1516) to J S Bach (Cantata 7, written in 1716), and from Sir William Sterndale Bennett (born April 1816) to Bernard Rose (born 9 May, 1916). The 50-year anniversaries include Francis Pilkington (born 1565) and Charles Wood (born 1866).

In addition to the anniversary theme, there is a common location for some of the music too – Magdalen College, Oxford, where both John Sheppard and Bernard Rose were to be found, but with nearly 500 years between them. Sheppard was a singer in the 1540s and Bernard Rose was the Choir Master when John Pearce was a choral scholar there. John has obtained special permission from his composer/musician son Gregory to perform Bernard’s unpublished hidden gem, Slow Slow Fresh Fount. Another connection with this famous college is that Bob Chilcott’s unpublished Now the Green Blade Riseth was first performed in 2014 by the Magdalen choir. Its second performance will be at this concert on 7 May, thanks to the composer and to the OUP for giving John the licence to perform it before publication.

There are also lovely pieces by Gerald Finzi, Sir Edward Elgar, John Dowland and Thomas Campion, as well as music by the talented young harpist, Niamh Flynn, and a trio of wind players called "The Diminished 7".

Tickets (£10 in advance or £12 at the door; half-price for full-time students) are available from Exeter Tickets, Tourist Information Centre, Dix’s Field, EX1 1GF Tel: 01392 665885 or online from

Exeter Bach Society
Exeter Bach Society
Mary Harris Memorial Chapel
Streatham Campus Exeter University
Saturday 7 May 7pm

Musical Director: John Pearce
Orchestra Leader: Anna Cockroft

Tickets: £12 (advance £10 U16/student £6/5)
Exeter Visitor Information: 01392 665700

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