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Proms 2011

Prestigious concert for the Choirs

80 members of the Southend Boys' and Girls' Choirs took part in the BBC Proms last year.  

On Sunday 17th July 2011, they joined forces with Eltham College for Boys Choir and CMSO Youth Chorus to perform the children's chorus parts of Havergal Brian's "Gothic Symphony".  Conducted by Martyn Brabbins, over 1000 performers will be involved in this massive work, which, although completed in 1920, was not performed until 1961.

The work earned an entry in the Guinness Book of Records for the longest symphony.  
 
The performance took place at the Royal Albert Hall, and amongst the groups performing are BBC Concert Orchestra and BBC National Orchestra of Wales with 6 adult choirs.  80 singers, aged 11 - 19 took part in the concert.

Proms Trebles

"Many different elements made the Proms Gothic performance the runaway success that it was. The quality of the singing of the Southend Boys’ and Girls’ Choirs was one of those elements, and far from the least, and on behalf of the Havergal Brian Society I offer you – and those who brought to your performance into such fine shape – our thanks and congratulations."

John Grimshaw, Chairman, Havergal Brian Society

 

"the massed choirs intoned the wonderfully unexpected hushed chords"

– Daily Telegraph

"Martyn Brabbins and his hordes did a truly magnificent job, and those who were there are unlikely to forget the experience".

– Guardian

"this impressively well-drilled performance under Martyn Brabbins, with the BBC National Orchestra of Wales and the BBC Concert Orchestra."

- Evening Standard

"Brabbins did a superb job in controlling orchestras and choirs alike to capture so astutely the required array of effects."

– Music OMH

"The massed ranks of eight separate choirs managed what are fiendishly challenging parts with aplomb and deserve to be listed accordingly: Eltham College Boys Choir, CBSO Youth Chorus, Southend Boys and Girls Choirs, Brighton Festival Chorus, Huddersfield Choral Society, London Symphony Chorus, BBC National Chorus of Wales, The Bach Choir, Cor Caerdydd. Two aspects particularly seem worthy of record – the moments where different sections seem to be singing different lines determinedly against each other – not as cacophonous as one might imagine and the near unaccompanied section which as the pre-prom radio feature noted harks back to the world of Tallis."


Havergal Brian's - Gothic Symphony (extracts from 2nd Movement)

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