2020 Advent Carol Services to go ahead

Posted on: 19 November 2020

Advent Carol Service 2019

Should restrictions continue to allow, we intend to go ahead with our plans to hold our 2020 Advent Carol Services, which will take place without a congregation. The service on Sunday 29th November at 3:00p.m. will be broadcast live on BBC Radio 3. The first of these was in 1981, making this the 40th occasion that the BBC has broadcast our Advent services.

The service on Sunday will be available to listen to here and on BBC Sounds as well as on the radio at 90-93 FM. The service will be available for 30 days following broadcast on the BBC Website and BBC Sounds. This year's service will feature Cecilia McDowall's A Prayer for St John the Baptist, our 2018 Advent Commission, as well as O virgo virginum, a work by current chorister Harry L'Estrange who wrote the piece when he was 11 years old.

The McDowall features on our forthcoming album release, Advent Live - Volume 2: a selection of live recordings from our Advent Carol Services. The album will be released on Friday 27th November, the day before the weekend of our Advent services.

The 2020 Advent Commission which would have premiered at the services – Cheryl Frances-Hoad's Lo! the desert-depths are stir’d for choir and harp – will be performed at a later date.

An Order of Service is available below:

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Recorded on
19 October 2023
  • Introit - Parsons: Ave Maria
  • Responses and Preces: Radcliffe
  • Psalm 25.1-8
  • Readings: Isaiah 40, 1-11, Luke 1, 57-66, 80
  • Jackson in G
  • MacMillan: Christus Vincit
  • Voluntary: Langlais, Acclamations (Suite Medievale)
The contribution of Andrew Nethsingha and St John's College, Cambridge to the Evensong tradition - both in the chapel and on record - deserves great praise