Pieta

Saturday 31 March 2018, 7.30pm

Crucifixus: Music at Eastertide, Brighton Dome

Duruflé - Requiem
Britten (arr. Morgan & Pochin) - Missa Brevis (world premiere)
Lotti, Caldara, Vivaldi, Bach - Crucifixus

Royal Philharmonic Orchestra
Brighton Festival Chorus
Brighton Festival Youth Choir
Conductor: James Morgan

Book tickets

Poised between the solemnity of Good Friday and the joy of Easter Day, this special concert by the massed ranks of two great choirs and one of the country’s finest orchestras provides an appropriate focus for the Easter weekend.

Featuring Duruflé’s exquisite Requiem and contrasting settings of the Crucifixus, the Chorus present a feast of choral music ranging from Baroque intricacy to 20th-century eloquence. The world premiere of a new orchestral arrangement of Britten’s Missa Brevis completes the programme, bringing this iconic Mass setting into the concert hall repertoire for the first time.

In one of a series of concerts to mark Brighton Festival Chorus’ fiftieth birthday year, the Chorus and Youth Choir are joined by the world renowned Royal Philharmonic Orchestra to perform some of the most emotional and moving works in the choral repertoire.

 

Saturday 12 May 2018, 7.30pm

Britten War Requiem, Brighton Dome

Britten Sinfonia
Orchestre de Picardie
Brighton Festival Chorus
Brighton Festival Youth Choir
Conductor: Arie van Beek
Soprano: Claire Booth
Tenor: Ian Bostridge
Bass: Gerald Finley

Drawing on the poetry of Wilfred Owen alongside the traditional words of the Requiem Mass, Britten’s War Requiem is both an eloquent tribute to the fallen of the Great War and a heartfelt plea for peace. This performance of a searing masterpiece also marks the centenary of the end of World War One.

The Chorus joins Britten Sinfonia and the Orchestre de Picardie, based in Amiens in the heart of what was the Western Front, for a unique British–French collaboration. A roster of top-flight soloists alongside the massed ranks of choral singers and instrumentalists promise an evening of unforgettable power.

 

Sunday 27 May 2018, 7.30pm

Walton Belshazzar's Feast, Brighton Dome

Royal Philharmonic Orchestra
Brighton Festival Chorus
Baritone: James Rutherford
Conductor: Sir Richard Armstrong

Fifty years ago a new choir was launched with a performance of Walton’s epic cantata Belshazzar’s Feast, whose choral music is both immensely challenging and unforgettably vivid. That choir was Brighton Festival Chorus, now established as one of the finest symphony choruses in the UK and an indispensable part of the Festival.

Just as in its 1968 debut, the Chorus is joined by the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra for this historic commemorative concert. Conducted by Sir Richard Armstrong and with the leading British baritone James Rutherford as soloist, this is a landmark performance for the Chorus, and an unmissable event for anyone who thrills to the intensity and excitement of a virtuosic ensemble at full power.

 

12-15 July 2018

Duruflé Requiem, Abbaye de Saint-Riquier, Baie de Somme, France

Orchestre de Picardie
Brighton Festival Chorus
Conductor: Arie van Beek

BFC will travel to France to perform this concert as part of the Festival de l'Abbaye de Saint-Riquier.

 

Wednesday 14 November 2018, 7pm

Britten War Requiem, Coventry Cathedral

Royal Philharmonic Orchestra
Brighton Festival Chorus
St Michael Singers
Soloists: Ilona Domnich, Gwilym Bowen, Lawrence White
Conductor: Paul Leddington Wright

To mark the centenary of the end of the First World War we will perform the War Requiem by Benjamin Britten in Coventry Cathedral, where the first performance took place on 30 May 1962. The War Requiem was commissioned to mark the consecration of the new Coventry Cathedral, which was built after the original 14th century structure was destroyed in a Second World War bombing raid.

 

Tuesday 20 November 2018, 7.30pm

Verdi Requiem, Royal Albert Hall, London

Royal Philharmonic Orchestra
Brighton Festival Chorus
City of London Choir
Conductor: Jac van Steen
Soloists: Helena Dix, Alessandra Volpe, David Butt Philip, Roland Wood

 

Sunday 9 December 2018, 4pm

Christmas Concert, Brighton Dome

Once again, our popular annual Christmas concert for all the family!

 


Images: Poppy field by Brett Jordan, Belshazzar's Feast by Rembrandt (National Gallery, London), Abbaye de Saint-Riquier by Albert Dezetter, John Piper windows in Coventry Cathedral by Steve Cadman, Jac van Steen by Simon van Boxtel, BFC/RPO Christmas concert at Brighton Dome by Summer Dean

"Brighton Festival Chorus were on absolutely top form, again delicate when required but thunderously powerful too, once again proving them to be a choral ensemble of real quality."
Elgar - The Dream of Gerontius
City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra
Edward Gardner
Latest7 magazine

"The Festival Chorus under James Morgan, singing without scores, managed huge sounds and whispered echoes with consummate skill. England may not think itself a Christian country, but the packed and rapturous audience in the Dome were responding to something spiritual beyond mortal understanding."
Elgar - The Dream of Gerontius
City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra
Edward Gardner
The Argus

"The wall of sound that is Vaughan Williams’ monumental Sea Symphony provided a thrilling climax, with soloists Elin Pritchard (soprano) and Nicholas Lester (baritone) soaring magnificently over a very energised and responsive Brighton Festival Chorus."
Barry Wordsworth
Latest7 magazine

"The brilliantly executed Sea Symphony of Vaughan Williams ..."
"The magnificent swell of music in the Vaughan Williams piece meant most of the words merged into a seamless seascape of sound conjured between the excellent Brighton Festival Chorus and the expressive orchestra. The choir lapped gently one moment, then sent powerful waves crashing to shore."
Barry Wordsworth
The Argus

"Brighton Festival Chorus are always impressive but for this anniversary performance they pulled out all the stops. Bach’s complex score, peppered with contrapuntal lines and soaring solos is a tough ask and for their 500th anniversary they performed it without scores, a feat in itself. A feat however only worthwhile if you get it right – and this they did. Driven skillfully by conductor James Morgan and the Chamber Domaine this was a memorable afternoon of sublime music. It is in performances of this calibre that one sees why the Brighton Festival Chorus has such an impressive international reputation and for that I salute them."
J S Bach: St John Passion (Brighton Dome)
James Morgan
Latest7 magazine

"The evening's programme drew to a close with the intense neo-classicism of Stravinsky's short but intense Symphony of Psalms. In both sets of psalms, we were treated to the full glory of the Brighton Festival Chorus, swinging and even barking as required in the Bernstein; and bringing hushed dignity and poise to the Stravinsky. How appropriate that in this, the closing large-scale concert of this year's Brighton Festival, the laurels should belong to this excellent ensemble, whose reputation and renown, deservedly, continue to bring pride to the city."
Leonard Bernstein: Chichester Psalms (Brighton Dome)
Igor Stravinsky: Symphony of Psalms
John Wilson
The Argus

"There is something fundamentally moving about hearing dozens of human voices singing in harmony and this performance by the 130 members of Brighton Festival Chorus was both uplifting and enriching.  Under the baton of James Morgan, this internationally renowned choir produced an impeccable delivery of two choral works by John Rutter."
John Rutter: Requiem (All Saints, Hove)
John Rutter: Mass of the Children
James Morgan
The Argus

"...we were treated to the full force of the Brighton Festival Chorus who proved once again to be a choir to be reckoned with...a powerful rendering of the mass...What a pleasure it was to have a final concert that was so popular with a near capacity audience..."
Mozart: Mass in C minor (Brighton Dome)
Thierry Fischer
Latest7 magazine

"What a cracking start to the orchestral concerts at Brighton's cheery and eclectic festival.  Two John Adams classics began and ended this programme: his pulsatingly mercurial Short Ride in a Fast Machine ... and Harmonium, the ecstatic choral splurge that first made his reputation back in 1981.  They were hurled out with verve and no little stamina by the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra and the Brighton Festival Chorus..."
John Adams: Harmonium (Brighton Dome)
Grant Llewellyn
The Times

"Brighton Festival Chorus brought the evening to a thrilling conclusion that brought the house down."
Mahler: 2nd Symphony (Brighton Dome)
Andrew Davis
The Argus