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Caritas Chamber Choir

Caritas Chamber Choir's photo ‘Caritas’, the Latin for charity is an ethos held close to the ensemble's heart. We sing with precision and passion, thereby captivating our audiences whilst fundraising for a variety of causes. In 2011, our Music Director, Benedict Preece, selected singers from his larger choir, East Bridge Chorale, to perform for the charity ‘Catching Lives’ in the March; Caritas was born. Since that date, the chamber choir has developed into one of the leading vocal ensembles in Canterbury and beyond, boasting both Stephen Portman and Dr Robert Willis, the Dean of Canterbury Cathedral, as our Honorary Patrons. Our members are auditioned, and a number of our singers have performed professionally with cathedral and London-based chamber choirs. We are frequently invited to sing services in Canterbury Cathedral and are the Dean and Precentor’s preferred choir when the boys and girls are away. In our short life, we have sung hundreds of works in such venues as Ely Cathedral, Ampleforth and Selby Abbeys, as well as a plethora of other churches, the Colyer-Fergusson Hall at the University of Kent and St Clement Danes, as part of the Brandenburg Choral Festival. Reviews have called our music-making “superb”, “brought vividly to life”, also saying “‘A Little Piece of Heaven’ was not an exaggeration, if taken metaphorically”, “My first impression of the choir was of a surprisingly lovely sweep of well-in-tune and homogeneous song rising up the hill.” and “Caritas is a very welcome addition to the rich musical life of Canterbury.” Recent highlights have included Handel’s Dixit Dominus, Bruckner Mass No.1 and No.2, Bach Magnificat and Motets. We also perform many contemporary works and have premiered pieces by Oliver Lambert, Benedict himself and UK premieres of Mikael Carlsson’s works. We often programme works by Arvo Pärt, Morten Lauridsen and Ola Gjeilo. Caritas is a busy choir, singing concerts in most months and is always seeking to perform more concerts for charity. We are actively pursuing the international connections that Benedict has made, and are strengthening links with our friends in Sweden (Haga Motettkör) and in Holland (Cantica Sacra). Our collaborations with more professional orchestras have been encouraged by the enthusiasm of London professionals to play with us. Benedict Preece, an ex Canterbury Cathedral Chorister, Deputy Tenor Lay Clerk, hornist, organist, accompanist and composer, continues to be in increasing demand as a conductor in Kent; “This is a choir to watch and Benedict Preece has a bright future as he leads Caritas from strength to strength.” His talent is fuelled by meticulous preparation and sheer hard work, qualities he values highly in the Caritas musicians. Benedict studies conducting with Stephen Portman and attends courses led by Peter Stark.

Member Type:
Music
Website
www.caritaschamberchoir.com
Contact:
Catherine St. Ville
eMail
caritas@canterburyartscouncil.org.uk
 
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