The King’s Singers baritone Christopher Gabbitas reflects on the joy of personal connections when performing:
Since joining The King’s Singers in 2004 I’ve been fortunate to sing in many of the world’s great music venues, but the concerts that remain with me are always those where there is a clear personal connection. Whether it’s family ties (my wife is from Kentucky so anything in that state is always special) or a particularly favourite venue (The Concertgebouw in Amsterdam takes some beating) some places rise above the every-day performance.
I sang as a chorister in Rochester Cathedral from 1987-1992, under the direction of Barry Ferguson, but haven’t sung in the Cathedral for nearly 20 years. The chance to return with The King’s Singers and perform in the building where, for me, it all began, is something I’ve hoped for ever since I started in the group. Rochester has nurtured some amazing musicians over the centuries, since the choir school taught its first chorister back in 604 AD.
It’s always good to close the circle, and returning this year to perform on 26 September as part of the National Federation of Old Choristers’ Associations will be a wonderful way to return. Every member of The King’s Singers trained as a chorister in a cathedral or school choir, and we owe our success to the incredible foundation that the English Choral Tradition gives to the boys and girls who sing in our world-class choirs, across the country. Performing a concert for other old choristers seems appropriate!
In addition, since moving out of London to the sleepy East Sussex village of Mayfield in 2011, I have worked to build up a relationship with my new neighbours and fellow village residents. An organisation that is much-loved by all is the Hospice in the Weald, and it is with great pleasure that The King’s Singers will be performing in The church of St Dunstan in Mayfield, in aid of the Hospice, the day before our Rochester concert – on 25 September.
Do joint us at one or both of these concerts, if you can!
Thursday 25 September – Mayfield – For tickets, please call +44 (01435 873 848
Friday 26 September – Rochester – Please visit the Rochester Cathedral website for more detail