Throughout the years since 12 April 1943, the Phil has been promoting and performing high quality choral music in Coventry and Warwickshire. Our archives give a flavour of the breadth of music which we have performed over that time including a number of premieres. We have shared the stage with internationally acclaimed soloists and instrumentalists and presented our concerts in such varied venues as tiny parish churches and large concert halls.
And yet, despite the undoubted quality of our output, our Main Choir and Coventry Singers remain non audition choirs. This enables us to meet one of our aims "to advance, improve, develop and maintain public education in, and appreciation of, the art and science of music in all its aspects". There is no barrier to membership of either of our ensembles. Consequently we are fortunate in having a substantial membership and frequently have over one hundred singers perform at our Main Choir concerts.
In the last year of the decade we have performed several very different concerts. In January we joined the Oriflamme Orchestral Ensemble in a performance of Gounod's St Cecilia Mass, followed by a performance of Mozart's Requiem and Haydn's Nelson Mass in May. After our Summer break, we got stuck into rehearsals for our November concert when we sang the immensely enjoyable Carmina Burana by Carl Orff and excerpts from Eternal Light by Howard Goodall. Finally we had our annual Christmas with the Phil concert in December.
Our plans for 2020, under the direction of our new Musical Director, David Wynne, include a joint concert with the Warwickshire Symphony Orchestra in May. We will be performing a programme of very British music and the Choir will be singing Elgar's From The Bavarian Highlands and Sea Pictures in the Collegiate Church of St Mary's in Warwick. In October we return to St Mary's to sing Duruflé's Requiem and Vaughan Williams' Five Mystical Songs.
We have some really exciting concerts planned for the next couple of years - so watch this space for announcements of future events.
We have a smaller group of singers called, appropriately, the Coventry Singers, and they perform a number of concerts throughout the year. If major choral works are not for you, then the Singers may well appeal to you. Keep an eye on the Events page for dates.
Our social committee ensures that we have plenty of amusement. In November we will cudgel our brains on our annual Quiz Night. Finally our Knit Stitch and Everything else group not only has a lot of fun but produces beautiful handicrafts for sale, raising an amazing amount for our funds.
Although we are immensely proud of our heritage, we are also looking to the future. With Coventry’s City of Culture year (2021) fast approaching, we would like to take every opportunity to reach out to the community and introduce everyone to some of the greatest music on the planet, whether as audience or performers.
Singing, particularly as part of a group is immensely enjoyable. We all love the challenge of learning new works and revisiting old favourites. And it’s not all about the singing – we are quite a sociable bunch too. If you feel tempted to join us, we would welcome you with open arms. You can come and try us out on Thursday evenings (no commitment) at 7:15 pm (Main Choir) and Monday evenings at 8:15 pm (Singers) at Quinton Park Baptist Church Hall in Cheylesmore.