Rare choral double for Mumbai's music buffs

Mar 25, 2015, 08:06 IST | Krutika Behrawala and Suprita Mitter

An organ concerto with pieces from an all-boys UK based choir, and a world-famous Indian choir will render Brahms’ Requiem

If you're in the mood to listen to the works of Mozart, Harris or the acclaimed George Frideric Handel’s Coronation Anthems, this evening, head to National Centre for the Performing Arts for an orchestral concert by the Eton College Chapel Choir.

The Eton College Chapel Choir
The Eton College Chapel Choir

In India for the first time, the all-boys choir from UK’s Eton College will perform along with the Symphony Orchestra of India.

“Eton college chapel choir is a very highly regarded boys choir.

The entry in the choir is by audition, and members are either ex-cathedral choristers or very experienced singers. It has a rich history, being established in 1441,” says Khushroo N Suntook, NCPA Chairman and Founder of the Symphony Orchestra of India. The 50-person ensemble will perform in a four-part harmony — soprano, alto, tenor and bass.

Tim Johnson, the Precentor, and director of music, Eton College Chapel, will conduct the performance. “Along with the choir, the concert will feature renowned organist David Goode playing NCPA’s recently-restored pipe organ in the choral pieces and in an organ concerto,” says Suntook.

On: Today, 7 pm
At: Tata theatre, NCPA, Nariman Point.
Call: 66223737

Brahms’ masterpiece for Lent
The Paranjoti Academy Chorus is a dedicated group of amateurs that pans communities and age groups and includes a mixed bag of professionals ranging from students and teachers to engineers, architects, doctors and housewives. The world-famous chorus is set for their next performance in the city.

The Paranjoti Academy Chorus at a performance with (left) Coomi Wadia
The Paranjoti Academy Chorus at a performance with (left) Coomi Wadia

The choir will perform Brahms’ Requiem in English, according to the original setting for two pianos by the Brahms. The Requiem was originally written in German, using text from the Bible. Conducted by maestra Coomi Wadia, the 43-member strong choir will be accompanied by two renowned pianists and two vocal soloists. Canadian pianist Paul Stewart, professor of piano, Universite de Montreal and Indian pianist Parvesh Java, director of Con Brio, The John Gomes Memorial Piano Competition and Festival.

Both vocal soloists have been singing from a very early age. Joanne D’Mello (Soprano), who has also been called Goa's classical singing sensation, started when she was just three years while Rahul Bhardwaj (baritone) is a trained Opera singer who began singing Hindustani classical as a child, too.

Coomi Wadia who has been a part of The Paranjoti Academy Chorus for 47 years explains, “This Requiem by Johannes Brahms is a challenging piece for chorus, soloists and was originally written for two pianos. The seven movements together last for 70 minutes, making it Brahms’ longest composition. We have chosen to perform this work of art, during the season of Lent just like it was first performed in 1868.” She adds, “The text of the Requiem is about the soul leaving, when one dies and about the beautiful feeling and the journey when it ascends. The music is a universal masterpiece.”

On: March 27, 7 pm

At: Tata theatre, NCPA, Nariman Point.
Call: 66223737

Don’t miss these compositions
>> Mozart:  Ave Verum Corpus
>> Harris:  Faire is the Heaven
>> Faure: Cantique de Jean Racine
>> Handel: Organ Concerto Op 4 No 4
>> Handel: Coronation Anthems

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