7 Jul

Thaxted Festival with Choir of King’s College, London

18:00 Thaxted Parish Church

Joseph Fort directs Holst’s rarely-performed First Choral Symphony, a setting of verses by John Keats, in a world première of a new realisation of this compelling work.

We are delighted to be performing again with the Choir of King’s College London following our memorable Thaxted performance of Holst’s The Cloud Messenger in 2022. One of the leading university choirs in England, the choir is again accompanied by English Chamber Orchestra, the most recorded chamber orchestra in the world.

Joseph Fort directs Holst’s rarely-performed First Choral Symphony, a setting of verses by John Keats. This six-movement work was composed for the Leeds Triennial Festival, and first performed there in 1925. It is presented here in a world première of a new realisation by Joseph Fort, for smaller forces than the original. This compelling work ranges from hushed chanting at the opening, through a lively scherzo recalling Mercury from The Planets, to a quiet postlude. This is a unique opportunity to hear one of Holst’s later works.

Elgar’s Introduction and Allegro demands great virtuosity from the orchestra, and sets the scene for the early twentieth century works in this concert. Flos Campi, by Holst’s close friend Ralph Vaughan Williams, was first performed in the same year as the Holst work featured here, and features solo viola, string orchestra and wordless chorus.

  1. Elgar Introduction and Allegro, Op 47
  2. Vaughan Williams Flos Campi
  3. Holst First Choral Symphony, Op 41
Joseph Fort
Conductor
Choir of King's College, London
Choir
English Chamber Orchestra
Orchestra
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