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CBS Music

Cathedral of the

Blessed Sacrament

Choir & Orchestra

PO Box 10069

Christchurch

New Zealand

Website www.cathedral.org.nz

Email don.whelan@xtra.co.nz

Notices

   

2014

As you will see from the attached on-line Music Lists, we anticipate some more exciting music in 2014, including the NZ premiere on Saturday 21 June of Haydn’s grandest composition, his St Cecilia Mass, and a return on Saturday 6 September to the amazing Bach B Minor Mass, a favourite of past years. We repeat our usual St John Passion and Messiah, present a Fauré Requiem on All Souls Day, and continue to sponsor a city choral festival – next year to be held in St Mary’s Pro-Cathedral on Saturday, November 22, the Feast Day of St Cecilia.

Following a successful tour to Asia, and a visit last year to Melbourne, planning has begun for a major tour in 2015 to Ireland and the United Kingdom. Supporters will be welcome to join the auditioned CBS choir and orchestra.

New members are welcome to join the cathedral choir, which rehearses on Wednesday evenings at 7.30 pm in the Boys’ High School music suite. Scholarships are available to tertiary and senior school students, together with leader/soloist positions. Sight reading ability is expected. Those interested should contact the musical director, Don Whelan, ph. 358 5873.

 

Way of the Cross

A performance of Liszt’s Via Crucis to mark the Lenten season will be the centrepiece of a concert at 3 pm on Sunday March 16, 2014, in St Mary’s Pro-Cathedral.

Composed in 1878-9, Via Crucis is one of the many religious choral works, which Liszt wrote towards the end of his life. It has a direct and austere style, and the text incorporates Biblical quotations, medieval Latin hymns and German chorales. Accompaniment is by piano and organ, played by Michael Lawrence and Don Whelan. Each of its movements depicts in music the traditional fourteen stations, which mark Christ’s last journey. Their realisation in painting or sculpture has become an expected part of Catholic church architecture, usually as an aid to Lenten devotions. A striking set of contemporary sculptures was commissioned from Christchurch artist Llew Summers to mark the Centenary of the Cathedral of the Blessed Sacrament in 2005. Although the originals are trapped within the desolate nave of our damaged basilica, their images will be projected onto a screen during the musical performance.

Pianist Michael Lawrence will also play two Brahms Chorale Preludes, and the CBS Choir will contribute motets by Bruckner and King John of Portugal. CBS choral and organ scholars will contribute solo vocal items, piano music by Chopin, and an organ transcription of Finlandia, by Sibelius. This seasonal concert proved very popular last year, and will feature the greatly expanded Pro-Cathedral organ, which has been transformed into a hybrid pipe and electronic instrument. Admission will be free, with a retiring collection, and all are warmly welcome.

Another interesting year of varied activity is planned for the CBS Choir and Orchestra, with preparations now underway for the regular Good Friday Bach St John Passion, more concerts, and the usual Christmas Messiah. Following their 2012 Asia tour, and a tour last year to Melbourne, they will travel this October to Napier and Hastings. Preparations are underway for travel during June / July 2015 to Ireland, England and Scotland, those interested in travel as performers or supporters are invited to make contact.

The cathedral musicians maintain an extensive repertoire of masses and motets, sung each Sunday at the 10.30 a.m. Solemn Choral Mass. New members are welcome to the 7.30 pm Wednesday evening rehearsal at Christchurch Boys’ High School. Sight reading ability is expected. A number of vacancies exist for choral leaders within the group, who enjoy unique opportunities to perform solo roles in significant Mass and motet settings with the orchestra and choir. Leadership awards, and other scholarships, worth up to $2000 per year, are available to suitable applicants. Those interested are invited to contact the CBS Musical Director, Don Whelan, phone 358-5873.

 

Music at St Mary's Pro-Cathedral

While waiting for decisions on the future of the Cathedral of the Blessed Sacrament, the  Cathedral Choir and Orchestra sing a Solemn Choral Mass at 10.30 am each Sunday at St Mary’s Pro-Cathedral, where they continue to maintain an extensive repertoire of masses and motets. During 2011, they travelled to many city parishes, presenting orchestral masses and recitals to appreciative congregations. As a consequence of the demolition of the Music Centre, they have also lost rehearsal venues, and storage facilities for their library and assets. Construction is scheduled to begin in 2014 on a new musical home for the CBS musicians, alongside the Pro-Cathedral, to provide them with the necessary rehearsal, library, and administrative spaces to maintain their liturgical commitments, and sacred concert outreach to the city. CBS Music is attempting to raise $50,000 towards this cost. Fund-raising will be assisted by benefit concerts.

Despite these impediments, they presented a concert at in 2012 at St Patrick’s Church, Waimate, at 5 pm on Friday, July 6, and in St Paul’s Anglican Cathedral, Dunedin (with its choir), at 3 pm on Saturday, July 7. In September, the cathedral choir and orchestra set off on their sixth international tour. 39 travellers presented Masses and concerts in the major cathedrals of Hong Kong, Beijing, Seoul, Nagasaki, Hiroshima, Kyoto and Tokyo. In 2013, they visited Melbourne, to sing at St Francis Church and St Patrick's Cathedral.

New repertoire in 2013 included a Pentecostal motet by the late Douglas Mews, together with a beautiful Ave Verum by Irish composer Colin Mawby, with optional string orchestra. On Palm Sunday, first performances were given of Pueri Hebraorum by Victoria, and Hosanna to the Son of David by Weelkes.

A tour to Melbourne at the end of September included solemn High Mass in St Patrick's Cathedral, together with a performance in historic St Francis Church, Lonsdale Street.

Based now at St Mary’s Pro-Cathedral, Manchester Street, the cathedral musicians maintain an extensive repertoire of masses and motets, sung each Sunday at the 10.30 a.m. Solemn Choral Mass. New members are welcome to the 7.30 pm Wednesday evening rehearsal at Christchurch Boys’ High School. Sight reading ability is expected. Scholarships and awards, worth up to $2000 per year, are available to suitable applicants. Those interested are invited to contact the CBS Musical Director, Don Whelan, phone 358-5873.