Music News March 2020
St Mary's Saffron Walden Epiphany Carol Service
On Sunday 26 January we celebrated the end of the Christmas season at St. Mary's with the Epiphany Carol Service. There was a goodly sized congregation with many holding lighted candles as the service began with the choir, conducted by Oliver King, at the west end, singing Brian Moles' Tribus Miraculis (We honour this holy day, adorned with three miracles), a modern setting of ancient Latin words.
Following the bidding prayer the choir sang the Nunc Dimittis from Stanford's setting in A. We all sang Hills of the North Rejoice with a fine descant in the last verse, followed by a new piece for the choir, Lo Star-Led Chiefs by William Crotch. Other choir pieces included the beautiful O Magnum Mysterium by Morten Lauridsen, Stainer's I Saw the Lord, and a setting of Ave Verum Corpus by June Nixon, which was well conducted by Elliott Randall, our Michael Swindlehurst Organ Scholar, who is developing his conducting as well as his organist skills.
The congregational carols included other well-loved pieces, only sung at this time of year: Brightest and Best, Hills of the North Rejoice, As with Gladness Men of Old, and of course, We Three Kings.
Our organist Jeremy Allen enriched our worship by turn, with appropriate, gently uplifting and powerful accompaniments to the service music.
The Bible readings interspersed between the musical items helped us to review the Christmas story, from Isaiah's prophesy, through the arrival of the three Kings, to St. John's vision of the new Jerusalem in Revelation.
Rowan and Sue Sylvester Bradley
In other music news, we were delighted to award surplices in December to Jolame, Matilda, William, Chloe, Evangeline and Bryony. At the start of February, Hayden, on his first Sunday as a probationer in the Choral Scholars, was presented with his dark blue ribbon, and Noah, having completed his probationary period as a Choral Scholar was inducted to the Choral Scholar ranks. With all three Carol Services now behind us, we look forward to Lent and Easter….
The SMMA AGM will take place in the Parish Rooms at approximately 11.45am, following the morning service on Sunday 8th March.
All are welcome to attend.