What's on Music St Alban & the Martyrs Date: Saturday 23 November 2019 Time: 7.30pm World premiere of a special commission: Richard James Harvey The Martyrs’ Call: A Cantata in Stone Liz Lane The Story of St Alban John Rutter Gloria The St Albans Choral Society’s first concert of its 75th anniversary season features the world premiere of The Martyrs’ Call: A cantata in stone by composer and organist Richard James Harvey, inspired by the polychrome statues of the Seven Martyrs situated in St Albans Cathedral’s medieval niches. These statues, installed in 2015, were created by sculptor Rory Young. The work was commissioned by the family of the late Lady Maitland, Young’s aunt, in accordance with her wishes. The programme also includes the first performance in the Cathedral of Liz Lane’s The Story of St Alban to a libretto by Andy Rashleigh, for which the Society will be joined by choirs from local schools. The evening ends with John Rutter’s exhilarating setting of the Gloria for chorus, brass, organ and percussion. St Albans Choral Society is one of Hertfordshire’s leading amateur choirs; it gave its first concert in December 1944 and since then has performed a huge part of the choral repertoire with music ranging from the Baroque to the present day. The Society has an enviable reputation for the commissioning and performance of new choral work and enjoys a fruitful relationship with Orchestra Nova, its regular performance partner. Recent repertoire has included the Requiems of Fauré and Duruflé, Handel Messiah and Dettingen Te Deum, Mozart Mass in C minor, Beethoven Mass in C, Britten St Nicholas and work by contemporary composers including Sally Beamish, James Francis Brown, Gabriel Jackson, Cecilia McDowall, Tarik O’Regan and Pēteris Vasks. Firmly rooted in the local community, St Albans Choral Society has also been involved in education outreach with local primary schools and the choir’s singing group regularly performs to people in senior living accommodation who are unable to attend concerts. Celebrated British conductor and festival director, George Vass, was appointed music director of the choir in 1994; in 2017, he was presented with a BASCA Gold Badge Award for his support of the British song-writing and composing community. Tickets: Premium £28 - Centre front with full view Classic £22 - Centre middle with full view Standard plus £16 - Centre back with full view Standard £10 - Centre back with full view No view £10 - Mainly located in the aisles or behind pillars. These seats have no view of the stage. No view seats will only be released when seats with views have sold out. Concessions: Children under 18 £5, Students with ID £5. Wheelchair spaces and carer discounts can only be booked through the Box Office on 01727 890290. Doors will open 30 minutes before concert starts. There is an interval of 20 minutes during this performance.