New music commissioned by the Choir of St John's

Posted on: 5 June 2019

The Choir of St John's premieres works by emerging and established composers during its Easter Term services.

In May, the Choir gave the first performance of Julian Anderson's 'St John's Service', commissioned to mark the 150th anniversary of the Consecration of St John's College Chapel.

On 5 June, the Choir presents a new work by Anna Semple, a recent Music Graduate from the University of Cambridge and winner of the inaugural Composer Competition for the Cambridge Female Composers Festival. The work receives generous support from Paul & Joanna Lindsell and Jeremy & Jodie Podger.

Since 2017, the Choir has worked closely with its Composer-in-Residence - Michael Finnissy, who has written a cycle of nine works called 'Anthems and Voluntaries'. This cycle for choir and organ receives its first full performance in the College Chapel on Friday 28 June 2019.

The Choir is grateful to the generosity of the Master and Fellows of St John's College for supporting these works, and for its continued support of music-making at the College.

Listen to Julian Anderson's 'St John's Service' >
Listen to Anna Semple's previous compositions >
Listen to Michael Finnissy's 'Dum transisset Sabbatum​' >

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Recorded on
23 February 2020



  • Responses: Tomkins (Peterhouse)
  • Psalm 109 (omit vv. 5-19) (Barnby, Hylton Stewart)
  • Stanford in B flat
  • MacMillan: O give thanks unto the Lord
  • Hymns 341, 461 (tune: Corvedale)
  • Preacher: Professor Deborah Howard - Professors Professing: The Human search for God - Architecture
  • Voluntary: Allegro Maestoso (Sonata in G) - Elgar
Choral singing comes no better

Fiona Maddocks, The Observer