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.
Thank you, concert-goers of Örebro for seeing us at our first concert of our Sweden tour. Today, we visit Stockholm Cathedral, performing our ‘Give Unto the Lord’ programme. @stjohnscam @SJCS_Cambridge #thisisjohns pic.twitter.com/RxUqhn0Jn7— St John's Choir (@SJCChoir) April 6, 2019
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 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!).
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…