‘To sing is to pray twice, the words of our hymns are prayers and when we sing them, we add to them a further dimension of honour and praise.’ St Augustine
ARE YOU A SECRET SHOWER SINGER? If that’s a yes, then good for you! Even Medics agree that singing is good for us. Singing in a choir sits head and shoulders above other forms of singing.
Why? Well, coming together and raising our voices as one in worship, builds bonds of co-operation, friendship and love; we have to listen to each other, blending minds, hearts and voices. Being a member of a church choir is unique in strengthening communication and respect across the generational divide. Ages of 8-80+ is not unheard of in a church choir. Singing and prior musical training is not a barrier to joining us! We welcome singers of all ages and abilities.
St Peter’s Church Choir is a four part, robed choir, numbering 25-30 choristers, welcoming adults and children. We are affiliated to the Royal School of Church Music.
Scenes from the Licensing and Installation
of our new Priest in Charge, Revd David Penny
We welcome junior choristers and their families into our choir. Covid has taken it’s toll on breaking voices and our junior choir will need a period of rejuvenation. Schools engagement is being re-established post Covid.
Adult and junior choristers progress through the RSCM “Voice for life” scheme in order to develop their voices and musical skills.
The choir sings on Sundays at the 10.30 Parish Communion service and for Choral Evensong 2/3 times a month. We provide music for the major festivals in the liturgical year, including Advent Carol Service, traditional Nine Lessons and Carols, Ash Wednesday, Holy Week, Easter and Ascension. We are privileged to offer music for Baptisms, Weddings and Funerals.
The choir has sung services at Bristol, Gloucester, St David’s and St Paul’s Cathedrals. We have been invited to sing at Worcester Cathedral in 2023.
We are a very friendly and social choir – an extended family!! We enjoy preparing music for our annual Choir Summer Concert. This gives us an opportunity not only to perform some wonderful church music, but also to let our hair down, and have some fun preparing secular musical items, both choral and instrumental, showcasing the hidden talents of this eclectic group of people. We often gather to celebrate life events for our choristers, Christmas parties, summer barbecues and community carol singing.
Meet the Joint Directors of Music
Shelley Everall Hoban (Choir Director) and Andrew Horton (Organist) were appointed in September 2018. They are fortunate to live and work within the heart of the community of Winchcombe. As a professional singer, teacher and organist respectively they bring a diverse skill set to their joint role, and they have an extremely harmonious working relationship, Praise be!
Shelley trained at the Royal College of Music as a soprano, gaining her ARCM and Dip RCM Teachers certificate, studying with Dame Heather Harper, Janice Chapman and Rita Hunter. She was awarded a London Wagner Society Bayreuth Bursary, the UK’s award for outstanding young Wagnerian singer, the Joan Cross commemorative Bursary awarded by the Britten Pears Young Artist Trust Aldeburgh. Specialising in dramatic soprano repertoire she has been an opera chorister for the ROH Covent Garden, Opera North, Frankfurt Opera and the Bayreuther Festspiele. Shelley’s solo oratorio engagements include large scale works in particular the Verdi Requiem. Venues include The Royal Albert Hall, conducted by Sir David Willcocks, The Queen Elizabeth Hall, Canterbury Cathedral, Snape Maltings, Aldeburgh, Winchester Cathedral and St Paul’s Cathedral. Shelley is an experienced professional consort and church chorister. She began singing as an 11yr old in her village church choir!
She sang in the Royal College of Music Chamber Choir under Sir David Willcocks, then professionally for St George’s Choir Hanover Square, Royal Hospital Chelsea, London Oratory Choir, BBC Singers, Monteverdi Choir, Hilliard Ensemble, and Choir and Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment. Shelley is an experienced singing teacher, and was Head of Singing at Putney High School GPSDT for 13 yrs. She now runs a private teaching practice from her home in Winchcombe for all ages and stages!
Andrew first learned to play the organ at school and afterwards was fortunate enough to enjoy unlimited opportunities to practise in the chapel at Sidney Sussex, Cambridge, where he read Natural Sciences. After graduating he turned to accountancy as a profession but quickly became assistant organist at the parish church of All Saints’, Marlow, where he played for over thirty years. During that time, he was involved in planning for weekly services and special occasions and accompanied many carol services and other high-profile events. He has accompanied visiting choirs at cathedrals in Wells and St Davids.
Andrew moved to Winchcombe with Lynne in 2013, and has been organist and joint director of music at St Peter’s since September 2018. He enjoys playing music from the Renaissance to the present day and when not seated at the organ bench, or his office desk, he enjoys singing with the Tewkesbury Choral Society, and visiting cathedrals with the choirs Cantemus cum spiritu and Laus Deo.-
How to contact us and get involved
Email us at: [email protected]
If you want to join the choir and would like a friendly chat
Speak to Shelley 07944 285 882 / www.ceremoniesandsong.co.uk
Our rehearsal schedule at the Parish Church:
Individual Tuition/”Voice for Life” Thursday 5.45 – 6.30pm
Adult Choir Thursday 6.30 – 8pm
Sunday morning 9.30 for 10.30am
Evensong 4.00 for 5pm (Winter) & 5.30 – 6.30pm (Summer)
Here are some recordings of the choir in action:
‘Were you there when they crucified my Lord?’ Arranged by John Barnard
‘Steal Away’ Arranged by John Bernard
‘Blessed be the God and Father’ Wesley
‘Myn Lyking’ Richard Terry
‘Nella Fantasia’ Ennio Morricone
‘We know the way’ from Disney’s Moana.