Previous Concerts / Reviews / Programme Notes

24. March 2017:      Mozart "Misse Brevis in D", Mozart "Solemn Vespers" , Peterson "No Greater Love"  (with soloists)

                    Review:  "A varied Easter Concert" "An effective balance of lesser know Mozart works and the Hollywood style of Peterson" "A beautiful rendition of the Mozart Laudate by Jackie Butterworth brought the audience to tears"  "The choir had obviously worked hard to achieve this level of performance... some shaky moments..."..hauntingly beautiful duet between Daphne Midwood and Steve Kingdon ... sensitive accompaniment by Sue Donovan on the piano"

23. November 2016: Handel "Messiah" (with  orchestra and soloists)

                    Review: "Uplifted by Handel's Messiah" "..large and appreciative audience..." "From Stuart Laing's ringing notes first proclaiming 'Comfort Ye' we knew we were in for a satisfying evening" "...Harriet Kirk...golden voice...mastery of the difficult runs in the middle section..."  "voices of Krystal McMillan,  Stuart and Jamie Rock have matured" "Jamie's heartfelt rendering of  'Behold I tell you a mystery' followed by a lively performance of the great duet 'The Trumpet' ... trumpet part brilliantly played by Andrew Stark " "Keith Jones took over the continuo part at very short notice... wonderful support" "...evening belonged to Marcus and the choir. As always, their sweet and rounded tone made them a pleasure to hear."  "Marcus had speeded up the tempi since the last performance in 2012, which gave the music a dancing feel which was lovely to hear" "Congratulations to choir, orchestra, soloists and conductor...wonderful evening...standing ovation...all gone home uplifted by this great work."

22. March 2016:      Vivaldi "Gloria", Faure "Cantique de Jean Racine", Mozart "Requiem" 

                    Review: "Minehead Choral Society was excellent in performance"  "What an evening!" "...sweet toned strings ..." "...Sue Donovan...played with aplomb...."  "Sian Cameron's rich tone complemented Krystal Macmillan's soaring soprano...accompanied by the plangent oboe playing of Caroline Tudor"  "The chorus detached the quavers nicely to give clarity to the music...lovely interaction with Sian." "Joined by Stuart Laing and Ryan Ross...all four soloists blended beautifully, particularly in the Recordare" "In charge was Marcus Capel. His musicianship, hard work and dedication enabled the chorus to give of their best" "The evening belonged to the chorus...excellent in ensemble, they brought out the dynamics well and looked as if they were enjoying themselves." "Wasn't that wonderful? Yes!!"

21. November 2015: A Night of Opera and Orchestra - including Mozart Violin Concerto in G and Orff "Carmina Burana"

                     Review: "Exciting Orff Performance" "...The orchestra was splendid and treated us in the first half to a delicate and sweetly played violin concerto."  "...applause after the first movement..was well justified..." "It was obvious the choir enjoyed the wonderful choruses giving full voice to the magnificent tunes." "The ladies of the choir should be particularly proud of the fine tones they produced throughout the evening..." "Our guest soloists Krystal, Stuart and Jamie sang wonderfully...showing acting ability as well as wonderful tone and interpretation." "A brave piece to attempt...tricky rhythms...nowhere to hide any mistakes...I need not have worried...Marcus kept a tight hold on both the choir and the orchestra." "The excitement of the piece was immediately felt and had us on the edge of our seats." "Marcus conjured an exciting performance...my congratulations to all concerned."

20. March 2015:      Mendelssohn "Elijah" (with  orchestra and soloists)

                      Review: "Choral society's wonderful Elijah" "...a wonderful evening that provided beautiful music, polished performances and a warm welcome ..." "Wonderful Irish baritone Jamie Rock delivered the prophet's curse with such strength and conviction, he set the tone for the whole evening." "Acting almost like a Greek chorus, the choir clearly really enjoyed playing their roles!" "Sophie Yelland's stunning performance of O Rest in the Lord sent shivers down my spine"  "Krystal Macmillan and Stuart Laing joined Jamie and Sophie to provide a truly classy quartet that sang effortlessly with real passion and conviction."  "...members of the choir, Jackie Butterworth and Daphne Midwood, joined the soloists singing with real confidence..." "The light and shade of the whole oratorio were beautifully crafted, so that the audience were led through the story with sensitivity and drama."

19. December 2014: Vivaldi "Magnificat" / Haydn "Te Deum" followed by carols for choir and audience 

                     Review: "Choral Society stamped its Mark Magnificently" "...the choristers looked resplendent in their black with a touch of red."  " ...the two leading lights of the choral society, conductor Marcus Capel and accompanist Sue Donovan... took their place on the dot of 7:30" "Marcus and the choir stamped their mark throughout the performance - ranging from lovely gentle flowing harmonies to strong unison singing and ultimately delicious choral harmonies"  "opportunities for soloists to shine...  Jackie Butterworth and Peter Thompson ... a truly delightful liberated moment when Jane Jones and Jackie sang the beautiful lyrical duet."  "both works were greatly appreciated by the audience."  "Readings by Jane Jones, Penny Brown and David Yates gave light, humour and time to reflect and the carols which followed were a joy to hear." " Opening solo of Once in Royal by Angela Morecroft was beautiful. " "...what a pleasure it was to be introduced to new settings of carols"  "The choral society is so fortunate to have Marcus - his energetic leadership is a fabulous contribution to the musical life of people in West Somerset".

18. March 2014:      Lloyd-Webber In Concert / "Joseph and the Amazing Technicolour Dreamcoat" (with soloists)

                      Review: "Superb Evening of Lloyd Webber" "...we knew we were in for something special..."  "...the different sections of the choir showed their strengths..." "..the choir gave a particularly warm and harmonious rendition..." "...Krystal and Stuart demonstrated their flair...soaring conclusion...anguish and drive..." "Beautiful sustained chords from the choir, as Sue Donovan's dramatic accompaniment picked up the recurring theme..." "Wonderful soaring sopranos, strong narrative from the contraltos and rich tones from the tenors and basses." "...Jamie gave the performance of the night with a fabulous accent and mannerisms." "A fitting climax to a superb evening's entertainment."

17. November 2013: Faure "Requiem" / Rossini "Stabat Mater" (with orchestra and soloists)

                     Review: "Delights by Choral Society" "...a moving and satisfying evening..."  "The Choral Society came up trumps reminding us of the beauties of this Requiem" "Krystal Macmillan sang the Pie Jesu with great feeling..." "Marcus Capel's enthusiasm and hard work brings out the best in his singers." "Impressive interjections from baritone, Jamie Rock" "The well-matched quartet of soloists - Krystal and Jamie were joined by Helen Stanley and Stuart Laing -  produced some exciting singing, both as a quartet and in their solo pieces." "Special mention must be made of Stuart's ringing performance of the well known tenor aria with a wonderful top D flat at the end." "...the large and enthusiastic audience..." "...the orchestra supported with some impressive playing."

16. July 2013:      Patriotic Proms Concert.

                    Review: "Patriotic Proms Expanded Chests" "...a rampant finale of flag-waving and lusty vocal-cord stretching..." "Informative programme notes kept the good-sized audience in touch" "...everyone sailed out into the cooler evening air, chests expanded with a little more patriotic feeling in their hearts."

15. March 2013:  Goodall "Eternal light" / Gounod "Messe Solennelle de Sainte Cecile"  (with orchestra and soloists)

                      Review: "Immensely Moving" "A Requiem for our time that was sensitively performed and immensely moving"  "...spine tingling Litany that had the audience entranced." "The whole choir excelled in their rendition of the Recordare" "The soloists gave polished and convincing performances" "This was a wonderful evening at a perfect venue that provided beautiful music, polished performances and a warm welcome all at once"

14. November 2012:   Handel "Messiah" (with orchestra and soloists)

                      Review: "Standing Ovation for Choir" "The Minehead and District Choral Society received a well-deserved standing ovation from a large audience..." "From the opening to the last notes, we were treated to an evening of delightful music making, conducted with precision and clarity by the Music Director, Marcus Capel."  "The Taunton Sinfonietta accompanied the choir with skill and understanding." "The choir can produce a full, sweet tone when required and their pianissimo passages are a joy to hear." "...admirable diction..."

13. March 2012:  Stainer "Crucifixion" / Peterson "No Greater Love"  (with soloists)

                      Review: "Subtle Handling of Stainer's Crucifixion" "The standard was set at the opening chorus when the choir entered with beautifully balanced and blended quiet singing: restrained yet full of energy. Just the sort of vibrant containment which conductors aim for..." "...the duet of Daphne Midwood and Peter Thompson with Sue Donovan on the piano...The tuning was perfect, the delivery absolutely simple and the ensemble so natural that it created a moment of magic. You could have heard a pin drop."

12. December 2011:  Karl Jenkins "Stella Natalis" followed by carols for choir and audience (with orchestra and soloists)

                      Review: "Choral Society Concert received Warm Approbation" "...Congratulations to the choral society...success in bringing this first performance of a new work to Minehead." "...Marcus was in no doubt, drawing full attention to detail from his forces throughout the work in which the effort made in rehearsal was evident." "Warm and thoroughly deserved approbation from an appreciative and satisfied audience..."

11. April 2011:  A Night at The Opera: Famous Choruses and Arias (with orchestra and soloists)

                      Review: "Dramatic from the Outset" "One sensed eager anticipation among the full house. Expectations were not disappointed."  ""The sopranos and tenors produced a particularly pleasing sound."  "The choir produced some lovely, confident and well-balanced singing leading to a dramatic climax."  "...so enthused the audience that they demanded - and got - an encore. A first in the history of the society."

10. December 2010:  Charpentier "Messe de Minuit" / Rutter Carols and carols for choir and audience 

                      Review: Depth of Sound announced the run-up to Christmas" "The programme was an imaginative compilation of festive music to cheer an appreciative audience." "Throughout the programme the choir must be complimented on the quality of their diction - whether in English or Latin each word could be clearly heard."

 9. March 2010:  Karl Jenkins "Stabat Mater" / "Palladio" excerpts from "Armed Man"  (with orchestra and soloists)

                      Review: "Balanced Voices and Orchestra" "The Society's 83 singers demonstrated their continuing improvement under Marcus Capel and were fully supported by the 18 strong Taunton Sinfonietta." "It was clear that all performers were well prepared and the attention to detail was notable with voices and players responding well to their conductor's interpretation." 

8. December 2009:  Bach "Christmas Oratorio" with carols for audience 

                      Review:  "Auditory bliss amid the hustle" "The chorales were lovingly performed with convincing bass and tenor lines, rock solid and wonderfully resonant altos and sopranos soaring over the top with rhythmical and dynamic accuracy" "...Jackie's lovely voice wrapped us in warmth and Angela provided the wonderfully persistent echo, fabulously pitched and sustained..." "Sue Donovan, at the lovely church organ...being all the instruments that Bach would have used." "...Charismatic leadership of Marcus Capel..." "... Peter Thompson's tall imposing figure made us really listen to his lyrical recitative..." "...It is a joy to watch Marcus conducting - you can feel the vibes of his encouragement and facial expressions reaching out even to the most resistant copy hugging chorister!" "A huge thank you to Marcus, Sue and the committee and to the choir..."

7. April 2009:  Haydn "The Creation"  (with orchestra and soloists)

                      Review: "Balanced Performance of Haydn's Creation" "...a most enjoyable rendering..." "The result of several months' hard work rehearsing...would have been very pleasing to the conductor Marcus and the rehearsal accompanist Sue Donovan." "...the evening was much enjoyed by the audience."

6. December 2008:  Rutter "Magnificat" /  Vaughan Williams "Fantasia on Christmas Carols" / carols for choir and audience 

                      Review: "An accomplished musical start to Christmas" "Throughout the whole programme...Sue Donovan at the organ provided a most sensitive and balanced lead and support for the choir." The spontaneous applause from the appreciative audience was a clear indication of what the choir had achieved." "...excellent solo performance by Jackie Butterworth..." "...a well balanced, wide ranging and thoroughly accomplished  Christmas Concert..."

5. April 2008:   KarlJenkins "The Armed Man - A Mass for Peace" / Vivaldi "Gloria" (with orchestra and soloists)

                      Review: "Glorious Vivaldi and Armed Man" "a large audience were treated to an evening of interest and enjoyment touched with a darker emotion" "...chorus of 85 voices...splendidly accompanied by 20 members of the Taunton Sinfonietta with Sue Donovan at the keyboard." "...delightfully innocent solo voice of young treble Rory Capel..." "Jacqueline Butterworth and Jane Jones sang beautifully" "there were a few blemishes...not all listeners will have noticed the restart of one element which Marcus handled sensitively and to which the forces responded swiftly" "...an accomplished presentation which demonstrated the continued improvement which the Choral Society is making under Marcus Capel's leadership..."

4. December 2007:  Faure "Requiem" / "Cantique de Jean Racine" / Mozart "Solemn Vespers" (with orchestra and soloists)

                      Review: "Deserving of Applause" "There is a new life about the Minehead and District Choral Society under Marcus Capel" "80 voices and 40 players...intimate to say the least" "...the chorus, clearly well rehearsed...stuck to its task and...shored the whole thing up." "...the second half... showed a marked improvement..." "...the singers...actually looked as though they were enjoying themselves!" "...responding to their own conductor with radiant enthusiasm and returning the obvious benefit of hard work in rehearsal."

3. May 2007:  75th Anniversary Concert: Mendelssohn "Hymn of Praise" / Karl Jenkins "Armed Man" excerpts / Handel "Four Coronation Anthems" (with orchestra and soloists)

                      Review: "Alert and Stylish Choral Concert" "...all confidently sung by the choir, clearly the result of much hard work in rehearsal." "Marcus Capel chose sprightly tempi throughout, never letting the music flag."  "The choir's singing was always alert and stylish..." "...the society gave a great deal of pleasure to a large audience and conductor and choir can feel proud of the way they celebrated the 75th anniversary."

2. November 2006: Schubert "Deutsche Messe" / Peterson "Night of Miracles" 

                    Review:  "Well Prepared Performance" "Schubert's many expression marks were scrupulously observed" "Though the beginning of piano phrases sounded rather tentative, the choir's soft singing was generally fine and the forte passages confidently strong with a good balance of voices." "The singers had been thoroughly schooled in German pronunciation...consistent and convincing" "Sleep Holy Child ...beautifully sung by Jackie Butterworth...the emotional heart of the evening..." "David Yates neatly timed his voice-over narrations" "...spirited performance which was warmly received..." "With his firm control Marcus Capel encourages and inspires his singers. This, his second concert in charge of the society, was a great success."

1. May 2006: Elgar "From the Bavarian Highlands"

Review:

Spring 2018 Programme Notes.pdf Spring 2018 Programme Notes.pdf
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Spring 2017 Programme Notes b.pdf Spring 2017 Programme Notes b.pdf
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Messiah programme notes 2016.pdf Messiah programme notes 2016.pdf
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Spring 2016 Programme notes.pdf Spring 2016 Programme notes.pdf
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Autumn 2015 Programme notes (Carmina).pdf Autumn 2015 Programme notes (Carmina).pdf
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Elijah Programme notes 2015.pdf Elijah Programme notes 2015.pdf
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Christmas 2014 Programme notes.pdf Christmas 2014 Programme notes.pdf
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Spring 2014 programme notes.pdf Spring 2014 programme notes.pdf
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Autumn 2013 programme notes.pdf Autumn 2013 programme notes.pdf
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Summer 2013 programme notes.pdf Summer 2013 programme notes.pdf
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Easter 2013 programme notes.pdf Easter 2013 programme notes.pdf
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Messiah programme notes 2012.pdf Messiah programme notes 2012.pdf
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Night at The Opera Program Notes.pdf Night at The Opera Program Notes.pdf
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Minutes meeting 8 Sept 2014.pdf Minutes meeting 8 Sept 2014.pdf
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Minutes meeting 2 June 2014.pdf Minutes meeting 2 June 2014.pdf
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Choral AGM Minutes - 2014.pdf Choral AGM Minutes - 2014.pdf
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