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Nigel's Blog

Christmas Round-up

17 December 2015

On advent Sunday we returned to Cadogan Hall together with the English Chamber Orchestra for a performance of Handel’s Messiah. We were thrilled to be joined by soloists Grace Davidson (soprano), Andrew Staples (tenor), David Soar (bass) and as a last minute replacement for our Patron Sarah Connolly, who was sadly taken ill, Anna Stéphany… continued

Nigel's Blog

The Tenebrae Effect and a new recording project

27 November 2015

At St Martin-in-the Fields in November we did the first of our major The Tenebrae Effect workshop. Henry Southern our manager was delighted to tell me it had sold out within a week of being advertised and that we had to increase the capacity for the event in order to fit in everyone who wanted to… continued

USA Tour 2015

USA Tour Reflections

3 November 2015

A mathematician’s reflection: Miles travelled: 12,500 Of which on ground transport: 1,800 Flights taken: 6 Number of bags lost: 0 Crossings of timezones: 8 Number of days off: 1 Girls who cried: 9 out of 9 Gallons (US) of coffee consumed: 48 No. games of bananagrams: countless Birthdays celebrated: 2 Number of voices lost: 0.5… continued

USA Tour 2015

USA Tour Blog: Ann Arbor

1 November 2015

Friday: 5pm, Battle Creek MI On the list of great bus journeys of the world, you’re unlikely to find St Louis MO to Ann Arbor MI in its upper reaches. It’s many many hours of remorselessly flat terrain, made occasionally more interesting by a slow right-hander, a couple of junctions, or, as in our current… continued

USA Tour 2015

USA Tour Blog: St Louis

31 October 2015

After a lively evening post-concert in Cincinnati enjoying a few rounds of pool and sampling Yuengling, the oldest lager brewed in the US, we were grateful for the luxurious departure time of 10AM to set off for St Louis. We broke the long journey with a quick stop over for lunch in Effingham Illinois (many… continued

USA Tour 2015

USA Tour Blog: Cincinnati

30 October 2015

After a 6am wake-up call, it is usual for an early morning coach to have an air of sleepy silence, which is only ever broken by the sound of a certain someone’s phone, or indeed my volcanic snoring. It is perhaps surprising then, that despite the forecast of continued ‘English’ drizzle for the day ahead,… continued

USA Tour 2015

USA Tour Blog: Birmingham

29 October 2015

Monday was a well-earned day off for most of our number (Nigel and Henry soldiered on with meetings and workshops). Some visited the local aquarium, some went in search of shops and Bourbon, many chose a lazy day in bed. The lovely people at Skylark Vocal Ensemble kindly invited us for a party in the… continued

USA Tour 2015

USA Tour Blog: Atlanta

26 October 2015

As I was checking in my luggage on the morning of day 4 of our USA tour I was asked where I was flying to. I didn’t know the answer. More worryingly, I had literally no idea where I was flying from. Such is the mental state of the hardened tourer following many hours of… continued

USA Tour 2015

USA Tour Blog: James Madison University, Harrisonburg

26 October 2015

Another early start for concert no 3 at JMU in Harrisonburg Va., but this time for a long coach ride, preferable to running the gamut of morning TSA queue misery at airports. The route took us through rural parts of Maryland and on down picturesque Route 81 and the Shenandoah Valley – at the right… continued

USA Tour 2015

USA Tour Blog: Philadelphia

25 October 2015

When I first heard Tenebrae, I was in a church in New York City known as Smokey Mary’s, which acquired this nickname for the large quantities of incense used during mass. It creates a rather evocative and exotic setting, despite being in the heart of the world’s busiest city, and with the astonishing sounds coming… continued

USA Tour 2015

USA Tour Blog: Dallas

24 October 2015

They say that ‘everything is bigger in Texas’, and one supposes there must be some truth to the aphorism. But I’m not sure any of us were quite prepared for the form this would take for our first stop in Dallas. After a long travel day, we were up at 9am for a rehearsal on… continued

Nigel's Blog

Brahms, Bruckner and Russian Treasures galore

12 October 2015

Having had a wonderful break of 4 weeks over the summer with the family down in Devon, which actually ended up being even more exhausting than our usual mad routine at home, things seem to have taken off at the furious pace they left off at back in July! So, we had another glorious trip… continued

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