C Peter Nottle2011
Copyright Shrewsbury Cantata Choir
We enjoyed singing Christmas carols at three different venues in November and December 2015; all sessions were organised by choir members and directed by Gill Berry (alto).
On the evening of 19 November, we opened our carol season by singing two sets of traditional carols a cappella to an appreciative, if rather transient, audience in the café at Battlefield1403 – the choir sponsor – where a food-tasting session was also in full swing. The carols had stiff competition from Father Christmas, who was upstairs handing out Christmas cheer to all small visitors. Our carol singing very much added to the festive atmosphere that evening.
It was almost a month until we gathered for the next carol assignment on 12 December at the new Percy Thrower’s Garden Centre. We set up keyboard and all other essential equipment, including our bedecked and tinsel-decorated collecting buckets, in the area known as the Greenhouse, right opposite the busy café.
It was a good place to attract an again rather transient audience into giving donations – we were collecting for Shrewsbury Food Bank. The carols seemed to go down as well as the lunches at the café: in fact the diners were the most generous donors during our two-hour session. We didn’t sing non-stop, as Gill had chosen four sets of carols with breaks in between. It worked perfectly, with the able accompaniment of Sue Sheppard (alto) on keyboard. With the addition of Gift Aid, we raised a total of £160.30 for a very good cause.
Our last carol session of the year was on 15 December at the Shrewsbury Severn Hospice, where we have sung for the past several years. This event was once again organised by Tony Pomatto (bass), who also sang The Christmas Song as a solo. Star attraction that afternoon, however, was Mary Fudge (soprano) with her unexpected, dramatic recitation of Shakespeare’s “When Icicles Hang by the Wall” from Love’s Labour’s Lost.
Singing at the hospice is very popular with the choir: the underlying sombre mood of the singers was, as always, dispelled by our heartfelt desire to bring some traditional Christmas comfort to very ill patients and their dedicated staff. We hope we succeeded in our aim this year and we look forward to a return visit next year.
Nicola Pacult (alto), December 2015
The picture on the left was taken during our singing at Battlefield 1403.
That on the right was taken during our time singing at The Wyevale Percy Thrower's Garden Centre.
More images from these occasions can be viewed by clicking on the appropriate picture on this page.