140 Years of Ayr Choral
Ayr Town Hall was packed to capacity on Sunday 30th October for one of the most memorable concerts in the history of Ayr Choral. Over ninety present and past members of the choir sang a selection of choral favourites, including excerpts from Handel’s Messiah (performed at the first official concert in 1878), Vivaldi’s Gloria and Faure’s Requiem; traditional Scottish songs, including Burns’ favourite, Ye Banks and Braes, and Mozart’s Ave Verum. We were supported by the highly talented Glasgow Festival Orchestra. Soloists Marie Claire Breen (Sop), Cheryl Forbes (Alto) and Andrew McTaggart (Bass) gave sparkling performances of a variety of arias, duets and solos.
A highlight of the evening was the World Premiere of a specially composed piece, gifted to us by our patron Sir James MacMillan, Quas ego non terras. This stunning piece with amazing organ accompaniment by Gordon Cree, was set to a ‘quirky, but strangely moving Latin poem by Scottish writer Arthur Johnston (1579-1641). ..and tells of his wandering through Europe at a tumultuous time in history.’ (MacMillan) A second piece by our patron, O Radiant Dawn, was equally enthusiastically received by the audience.
The concert ended with the audience joining the choir in a boisterous rendering of Auld Lang Syne, including actions. The party mode continued with birthday cakes and sparkling drinks for all. A display of memorabilia and photographs in the hall proved popular with choir and audience, and informal community singing took place with enthusiastic audience members joining in.
The 140th season will continue with the Christmas Concert on Sunday 18 December, 2016 and a performance of The Brahms Requiem on Sunday 2 April 2017. We hope you can join us then.