The beautiful surroundings of St. Bartholomew’s Church, Much Marcle, with its ancient churchyard yew and the superbly restored tomb of Blanche Mortimer, provided the backdrop for the latest in the series of concerts entitled Music in Quiet places. Once again, the church was full to bursting and once again the audience was entertained by a wonderful evening of young talent from both the Cathedral School and Much Marcle Primary School. The choir from the primary school recently won first place at the Hereford Festival and we could quite see why. The energy and enthusiasm from such a young group of singers was wonderful to see, especially as they sang entirely without music, just like the older girls.

The programme was varied. Jo Williamson, Musical Director of Cantabile, Hereford Cathedral School’s senior girls’ choir (winners of Songs of Praise senior school choir of the year 2015) conducted the girls in groups of short songs ranging from a nursery rhyme, traditional English, Irish and Welsh songs and an Easter hymn to a much more upto date song by Coldplay. The Primary School choir, conducted by Bridget Snasdell, entranced everyone with their rendition of Pop Festival and This Little Light of Mine. The children included movements and clapping which gave extra life to their performance. In addition, there were vocal solos and a duet from members of Cantabile, and beautifully played flute solos from two young Much Marcle flautists. The evening was brought to a close when the two schools joined together to sing The Lord Bless You and Keep You by John Rutter.

Everyone enjoyed the concert; at the Church Crawl the following day, people were still talking about how good it had been – the wine and the sandwiches provided by the Much Marcle helpers as well as the performances. The poise, maturity and professionalism of Cantabile combined with the sheer exuberance and delight in music shown by the children from Much Marcle was an absolute joy.


Herefordshire Historic Churches Trust