Workshops, Commissions, Visiting Choirs and Bands
The RFS has always been open to new ideas. Music workshops have been a welcome way to get fresh insights from other conductors and gives us the opportunity to spend concentrated time looking at new music.
Two memorable workshops have been with the conductor Brad Holmes from Illinois in the USA in 2006 and 2010. A highly engaging and charismatic choir director, Brad introduced us to and opened up our understanding of the American choral repertoire.
Jonathan Willcocks, RFS patron, has had strong links with the choir for many years and has been another regular source of inspiration. He has led excellent workshops for us and has conducted RFS concerts in Eton School Hall and Windsor Parish Church. The RFS recently commissioned Jonathan to compose a piece for the choir. This five movement work, Song of Mary, has been a big success with the choir and one which we will surely perform again and again. In 2013, a group of members travelled to New York to sing A Great and Glorious Victory in the Carnegie Hall with Jonathan Willcocks.
Another commission was from Nicholas Bannan in 1990. Nick took the words from Psalm 84 for this composition. It proved to be very challenging and we were rehearsing it every night during the week before the concert!
We also held a highly successful Come and Sing event in October 2017 welcoming singers from other choral societies to sing the Messiah with us.
RFS has welcomed many choirs and bands over the years including Svatopluk from the Czech Republic, Koninklijke Chorale Caecilia from Antwerp, Fron Male Voice Choir from Froncysllte near Llangollen, GForce Gospel Choir from Merseyside, The Will Todd Ensemble, The Black Dyke Band from Yorkshire and the Life Guards Band back in 1992 when security wasn’t quite so difficult. More recently we were delighted to welcome the Enfield Citadel Band of the Salvation Army.