To be celebrating 50 years of the Grantham Choral Society is exciting for the group as a whole, but for some members it is an extra special time.
For these dedicated choral singers have been part of the group since its inception, helping to shape the society as it is today.
To mark its 50-year history, the choral society is putting on an anniversary show at St Wulfram’s Church, on Saturday, April 27, where they will sing Handel’s Messiah. The show will begin at 3pm to allow the choir and audience the opportunity to enjoy a drinks reception afterwards and to view some of the society’s pictorial archives.
Some are sure to show the year it all began, in 1963 when Grantham marked its quincentenary. As part of a year-long programme, 70 people who enjoyed singing gathered at St Wulfram’s Church on February 2 to sing under the baton of Philip Lank and the Leicester Symphony Orchestra. On this day, the society was born. Intially called Grantham Music Society, it went on to become Grantham Choral Society in 1967.
Over the past five decades, there have been just four musical directors – Philip Lank directed for 32 years and was followed by Kenneth Lank, Philip Robinson and Simon Bell, before Mr Robinson returned to the helm. At the start of the group’s 51st year, Nigel Stark will become musical director.
Numbers in the choir have grown and it now stands at around 120 members.
During the anniversary show, musical director Philip Robinson will conduct the Lincolnshire Chamber Orchestra with soloists soprano Nicola Pulman, mezzo-soprano Katie Stevenson, tenor Richard Roddis and bass-baritone Jeremy Leaman.
* Tickets are available, at £15 each (£10 for students). They are on sale at the Guildhall Arts Centre box office in St Peter’s Hill, at Clarks shoe shop in High Street and at Simmonds Music in Westgate.