In July, the International Festival Chorus Children’s Choir saw a group of 8 to 14 year old excited kids, their staff and supporters touch down in London from Beijing to embark on a tour of England and Scotland.
Their aim was to get a taste of the English choral tradition, both educationally and musically and after a long haul flight, were thrown in at the deep end with a touching performance at Southwark Cathedral on their first full day.
Under the Cathedral’s imposing perpendicular arches they sang to an enthusiastic audience, with a repertoire of Western and Chinese songs. After a panoramic tour of London and an excursion to Harry Potter World, the group attended a workshop at St John’s College, Cambridge with its Director of Music, Andrew Nethsingha, who explained to the group the Cambridge College singing tradition and he took them through a couple of pre prepared pieces. Onwards to Telford, the group joined forces for an inspiring workshop day of music making with the National Children’s Choir of Great Britain at Shrewsbury School before heading up via the Lake District to Glasgow. They ended their tour with a trip to Edinburgh, a final rewarding performance at the ISME Conference at the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland and prizes handed out at a meal at the Corinthian Club in Glasgow.