Tag Archives: Choir

Joint Netflix choir project for upcoming ‘Safe’ Netflix series

Joint Netflix choir project for upcoming 'Safe' Netflix series

The project began life on A level results day when I was asked if we were interested in providing a choir for an episode of an upcoming Netflix series ‘Safe’ – and could I find some suitable haunting music for a short assembly scene, ideally not in copyright!

Joint Netflix choir project for upcoming 'Safe' Netflix seriesAfter much consultation with other musical/choir friends, Red film company unanimously liked the beautiful English madrigal we chose – ‘Weep o mine eyes’ by Bennet. Written in 1599, during a wonderful compositional period of English madrigal/part-songs, this SATB piece was perfect for the remit: poignant, not too long, and for the mixed voices of the film choir scene.

We approached AGSB for tenor/bass voices and were delighted when they found 7 students who would like to sing with the 15 AGGS Chamber choir soprano/altos.
After just one rehearsal – augmented by just a few adult teacher singers, the film production team recorded the track professionally at school.

Joint Netflix choir project for upcoming 'Safe' Netflix seriesThe project culminated in a long film shoot Sunday, beginning with breakfast at 7.30am, ending with the last shot taken at 5pm! The school was unrecognisable, with the Main Hall now the assembly space of the fictitious ‘St Winifred’s School’, complete with new school uniforms for all the choir, a false wall in place in the hall and a different school crest etc etc…
The complete cast of around 80 were present, including some famous names – watch the series to see who!

After a total of 15 takes of the recording, where we sang over our pre-recorded track, different actors were featured/different angles of the choir were taken, and all students were a credit to themselves in their professionalism during what was a fairly arduous process. Despite this, however, no one grew tired of the madrigal: the hallmark, possibly of great music! Indeed, several film crew and cast commented how much they loved the music…

I was privileged to have coached the 7 actors who formed part of the choir, to mime convincingly as they sang with the choir – who also did brilliantly and very much looked the part.
This has been a wonderful joint venture for all students and staff involved, not least to sing Renaissance polyphony together, but to sing 4 part harmony, and to collaborate across both schools.

We feature in the opening scene of episode 4, but our choir madrigal recording will be used as a theme throughout….!

Ms Mayall

Joint Netflix choir project for upcoming 'Safe' Netflix series Joint Netflix choir project for upcoming 'Safe' Netflix series Joint Netflix choir project for upcoming 'Safe' Netflix series Joint Netflix choir project for upcoming 'Safe' Netflix series Joint Netflix choir project for upcoming 'Safe' Netflix series

John Stephens, CEO, writes about his recent experience returning to singing in a choir!

Taken from John Stephens (CEO of BFET) weekly newsletter:

Weep O Mine Eyes, Elizabethan Madrigal‘Earlier this week I had the great experience of joining a mixed choir of students from AGGS and the boys’ grammar school to sing an Elizabethan madrigal in four-part harmony. It’s about thirty years since I last sang anything like this, and despite having done my homework on the piece I was terrified at the prospect of displaying my ‘new learning’ so publicly. Moreover, the group had never sung together before. In the event, I needn’t have worried – we were, after all, in the hands of an expert teacher in Ms. Mayall, AGGS’ Head of Music. She got the best out of us with the right balance of critique, high expectations, challenge, encouragement and good humour, the last of which provided the right climate for us to get comfortable in that inevitable dissonance of new learning.’

Summer Serenade July 2017

Summer Serenade, July 2017
Summer Serenade, July 2017

80 girls performed in this annual Summer concert – a smaller event as many of the older girls are not in school, but nevertheless full of variety and quality of performances.

The programme included some very promising Y7 soloists, 3 Y10 GCSE soloists, Saxophone Ensemble, Jazz Band, Junior Choir and String Orchestra. Also Recorder Ensemble and Junior Strings – both led by students.

Many Y11 and Y13 students returned from their study leave to perform in String Orchestra and Recorder Ensemble. The former’s programme of very high calibre, with Anna T (Y11 and studying singing at the Junior RNCM) performing a Handel aria, accompanied by the String Orchestra, and a piece composed by a former parent, Adrienne Spilsbury (mother of Cerys and Ffion).

Junior Choir performed a 10 min fun cantata : Rooster Rag, describing the entertaining journey of a hen, rooster and cunning fox, using solos/choruses and some entertaining images on the screen. Thanks go to the Art Dpt for excellent masks and also the caretaking team, reprographics, staff helpers and PTA/World Challenge team for all of their support, without whom we could not put these kind of events on.

Lancashire Chamber Orchestra Concert

LCO-22ndNovember2015Making a most welcome return to conduct and direct the orchestra from the harpsichord is JUSTIN DOYLE from Opera North, formerly director of the Manchester Chamber Choir and now too working with the BBC Singers. We are very privileged –and fortunate-to have as our soloist for this concert , the distinguished soprano Bibi Heal who has already established an outstanding reputation nationally and internationally on the opera stage, in oratorio and in a extremely diverse variety of other musical genres. The first half of the concert is a “Handelfest” with extracts from some of Handel’s many operas. The second half will include some rarely heard Haydn works including an early symphony and Bibi Heal will join the orchestra in one of Mozart’s finest works for the solo voice the concert aria “Ah lo previdi” which the composer wrote especially for one of the greatest singers of his day.

A true musical treat in store for all.

For more information, please contact me on 0161.980.4275 by E-mail

joyceanddavid@live.co.uk  or for more details about the orchestra via its web-site.

www.lancashirechamber.co.uk