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Tenebrae – local connections in Exeter

Posted on 1 September 2017

Bethany Partridge performing with Tenebrae in Paris, St Chapelle (second from left)

This September Tenebrae will be performing in Exeter Cathedral and we caught up with local soprano and Associate Artist, Bethany Partridge, about heading back to her home town for this exciting performance.

Tell us about your connections to Exeter and, in particular, Exeter Cathedral?

I was a girl chorister at Exeter Cathedral from 2002-2006 and then went on to Exeter School for secondary and sixth form. 

What’s one of your fondest memories of singing with Exeter Cathedral choir?

Singing as a girl chorister really laid the foundations of my career as a singer and I’m so grateful to Andrew Millington and Stephen Tanner who were in charge of the music during my time there. I fondly remember the 2006 cathedral choir tour to the USA which was an amazing experience as a thirteen-year-old – we were so lucky! 

How did you come to sing with Tenebrae?

I studied music at Trinity College, Cambridge where I was a choral scholar. My first Tenebrae experience was stepping in to replace an ill soprano on a tour to Lessay, France in August 2015, at a day’s notice! I’ve been singing regularly with the ensemble since.

Are you looking forward to Tenebrae’s performance in Exeter? Do you have a favourite piece in the programme? 

I’m really looking forward to collaborating with Antiphon in Footsteps by Owain Park – I’m expecting to see many familiar faces from my cathedral days! But, my favourite piece has to be Joby Talbot’s Path of Miracles. It’s a choral epic and unlike anything I’ve ever sung before.

Does the singing tradition run in the family? 

I’m one of five children and we’ve all been choristers at Exeter Cathedral! Felicity (11) is still a chorister here, so I love coming back to hear her sing when I’m visiting home. 

Where next for you and Tenebrae? 

Tenebrae will be performing in Truro the following night (Saturday 16th). The following week we are performing in Windsor, Rye and Perth! There’s a lot of travelling!

See Beth and Tenebrae perform in Exeter Cathedral on Friday 15th September, 7:30pm. Book your tickets now!