The work, which some consider to be one of Rachmaninov’s greatest compositions, is seldom performed, so this concert is a rare opportunity to hear an incredibly beautiful piece in the glorious acoustics of St Paul’s Church, Alnwick.
The choir has been learning this great choral work with words in Old Church Slavonic, and has been coached in pronunciation by an expert, David Whitlam. David studied Russian at University College Oxford at the same time as the choir’s director, Peter Brown, was studying History.
David sang under Peter’s direction in the College Chapel Choir.
He has sung with top London choirs and advised them on their Russian pronunciation.
He will join Rock Festival Choir, singing with them in the performance. Although it is popularly known as the Vespers, it is actually called the All-night Vigil, even though the Orthodox office of vespers with matins would have taken about three hours in a Russian Orthodox church, rather than all night.
This acapella choral performance will be about an hour of sublime music. The Vespers is a fascinating and compelling work.
Tickets, on the door, are £10 and £9 concessions.