On Saturday 11 May the Royal Hospital School hosted their annual Choir Concert. The Concert was a roaring success with a standing ovation and the large audience demanding an encore. This was an extra special concert as it was Peter Crompton’s last Choir Concert as Director of Music at RHS.
As has become customary, the first half of the Concert was performed from the choir stalls with a range of performances. These included unaccompanied anthems by Thomas Tallis and an exquisite duet by Jessica Hazelton and Hannah Ilori who sang “I waited for the Lord” by Mendelssohn. Jessica also sang Errol Garner’s famous song “Misty” while accompanied by Elizabeth Ponsonby on the saxophone. There were two items by the patron of RHS music, composer John Rutter, who is closely associated with the Royal Hospital School chapel choir. Olivia Peacock distinguished herself at the grand organ in a solo based on the hymn “Now that we all our God” by Karg-Elert. The chamber choir finished the first half with performances of “Streets of London” and the famous “Rhythm of Life” by Sammy Davis Jr.
The second half was performed from the organ gallery and featured great anthems, such as “Eternal Father Strong to Save” by the former organist of Liverpool Cathedral, Noel Rawsthorne. This was specially composed for Peter Crompton and the Chapel Choir. The highlight of the second half was the world premiere performance of “Exalt us with your Love” by Will Todd and commissioned by the Royal Hospital School to celebrate the Tercentenary.
The concert finished with Parry’s great anthem “I was glad”; a fitting conclusion in the 60th year since Queen Elizabeth II was crowned in Westminster Abbey. As the audience demanded an encore the choir responded with “God be in my head” by Philip Wilby.
All together this was a highly successful performance by both the chapel and chamber choirs. Peter Crompton will be performing in one final concert before retiring from the post of Director of Music, which will be the ‘Toccata Spectacular’ organ recital on Saturday 22 June at 1pm. For more information contact firstname.lastname@example.org or 01473 326222 or www.rhscommunity.co.uk