Presidents - Bob Chilcott and Jonathan Willcocks
Patron - Raymond Gubbay, CBE
Musical Director – Roger Humphrey
Assistant Musical Director – Rosemary Pennington
The two choirs consist of over 120 singers, aged 8 - 21 from across Southend and South East Essex, in addition to a training choir, a Young Men’s Chorus and a ladies’ chamber choir. They frequently appear at corporate events, including prestigious London hotels, such as Claridge’s Hotel, Hampton Court Palace and The Mansion House. They have performed on national TV and radio, in addition to making recordings and broadcasts. Over the years, concert tours have taken the choirs to Canada, US, Europe, Australia, Singapore and the Seychelles.
In 2013 to celebrate the centenary of the birth of Benjamin Britten (the founder President of the Boys’ Choir) the choirs presented a tour of Noye’s Fludde, with the Britten Sinfonia, with funding from Arts Council England, across Essex and London.
The choirs have performed at the BBC Proms on several occasions, including twoprformances last year; Mahler’s “Symphony of a Thousand” with the BBC National Orchestra of Wales, and the BBC Ten Pieces Prom. Members of the Southend Young Men’sChorus are featured on the BBC’s Ten Pieces DVD, a national educational resource available to all schools in the UK.
The choirs work closely with Snape Maltings for a range of projects, and have also been involved in the BBC Ten Pieces Coaching Scheme on several occasions.
Other engagements have included performances with British Youth Opera, and concerts at the Royal Albert Hall, St Martin in the Fields, St James Piccadilly, and Cadogan Hall. In 2016, the choirs performed in Toronto, Ottawa, Montreal and Quebec, and in summer 2017 they performed in St Mark’s Venice and the Vivaldi Church, Venice, as well as touring towns along the coast of Lake Garda. Last summer the choirs toured Australia and Hong Kong, performing in Sydney, Adelaide, Perth and Hong Kong. Next year they plan to visitthe east coast of America, to perform in cities including Philadelphia and New York. Closer to home, recent concerts have included several performances in London concert halls and churches, and groups of choristers singing carols in London’s Claridge’s Hotel on weekends throughout December.
Earlier this year, the choirs made a concert tour to Spain and sang in the Crypt of the Sagrada Familia, and in Barcelona Cathedral.
“…the brass blazed triple forte and the Southend Boys’ and Girls’ Choirs and BBC Symphony Chorus exploded with Light and Love”. – The Times
"the massed choirs intoned the wonderfully unexpected hushed chords" – Daily Telegraph
“The speeds remained just the right side of hectic, and wrought miracles of exuberance from the Southend Boys’ and Girls’ Choirs, angels with dirty faces as Goethe’s closing scene from Faust starts its steady ascent. This is the ultimate Proms spectacular, and all involved did it proud”. – The Arts Desk
“The combined forces of BBC National Chorus of Wales, the BBC Symphony and London Symphony Choruses, and the Southend Boys’ and Girls’ Choirs sounded awesome throughout.” – The Guardian
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