Day 1-2 | Sweden Tour 2019

Posted on: 10 April 2019

A concert tour outside of the UK is always a highlight for the boys and Gents of the Choir of St John’s College, Cambridge. Our first outing for 2019 would be a short tour to Sweden, performing concerts in Örebro, Stockholm and Västerås.

 

Our tour to Sweden started halfway through the Easter holiday break. The coach journey to London Heathrow would be the first time the boys and Gents had seen each other since Lent Term concluded. After a two-hour flight, we landed in Stockholm. The end of the first day prompted a brief exploration of the city, with the boys having an early supper.

The second day would not officially begin until a late-morning coach trip to Örebro, in the West of the country. This gave the boys time to visit the park and enjoy the free time available. The Organ Scholars, meanwhile, ventured to Örebro at a less convivial hour of the day, so that they could practice the organs at our venue, the Olaus Petri church.

The choristers play football in the park in Stockholm.

The church was adorned with a large banner of the Choir, alongside various posters proclaiming that the concert was “UTSÅLD” (Swedish for “Sold Out”). This concert was a major event in the local calendar. A choral scholar and chorister were interviewed live on Swedish radio, and were asked questions about their lives as singers and where else the Choir would travel to on the tour.

The official title of our concerts is ‘Give Unto the Lord’, after the Elgar work of the same name, exploring the English language in a variety of styles, from Byrd’s Mass in Four Parts to 20th century fare from Jonathan Harvey and Herbert Howells. The Choir received a standing ovation for its performance, after which the encore was Bruckner’s 'Locus Iste' (a good choice for encouraging sales of the Choir’s new recording of the same name!).

The organ in Olaus Petri Church, Örebro.

As per tradition, the Choral Scholars performed a second encore as their close-harmony alter ego, The Gentlemen of St John’s. Their arrangement of “Blue Moon” took the audience by complete surprise, once again demonstrating our singers’ ability to perform different musical styles within the same concert.

A post-concert reception called a “mingle” was laid on for the Choir in the Church Hall before the coach back to Stockholm. The following day would see them perform in the glorious venue of Stockholm Cathedral…

The Choir of St John's College, Cambridge.

Share this

Latest webcast

Recorded on
6 March 2019

This service was broadcast on BBC Radio 3 on 6th March 2019. Music includes Gregorio Allegri's Miserere Mei, Deus, and William Byrd's Ne Irascaris, Domine

Choral singing comes no better

Fiona Maddocks, The Observer