High Life - the view from the top

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A page from Mendelssohn's Elijah

'Lift thine eyes, oh lift thine eyes'...

... the exhortation of many a choral conductor, often uttered in exasperation and rather less genteelly, as the assembled voices respond sluggishly to direction. But in this case we are singing the gorgeous and romantic, if somewhat schmaltzy angels' trio from Elijah: Lift thine eyes, oh lift thine eyes, to the mountains, written for Sopranos 1&2 and Altos. A beautiful moment of peace and calm amidst an oratorio full of high drama including famine, false gods, fire from heaven, tempest, and a fiery chariot to boot. The female voices of the Waynflete Singers have been awaiting this chorus in anticipation. It is going to be a very special moment when we finally get to sing it in the Cathedral with our guests from Newcastle Bach Choir. The acoustic will ring, as the parts move in exquisite harmony together and we hold on to our pelvic floors in the hope that the pitch doesn't sink!

I have just returned from a week away skiing and the chorus Be Not afraid has been my regular 'earworm' on the slopes. I have even found myself singing it con belto as I twisted and turned down an icy 'red' category run. It certainly gave me reassurance, even if those sharing the piste (fortunately fairly few) thought I was pretty bonkers. Elijah certainly gets in your head.

We are looking forward to being joined by our visitors from Newcastle Bach Choir, collaborating with us for this concert and for a packed weekend of music-making, as well as socialising and experiencing the joys of our wonderful city. It's going to be very full on, and we hope a lot of fun.


Our Elijah concert takes place on Saturday 30 March

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