Each year, a lot of people visit the Westminster Abbey seeking God’s blessings and healing. Many of them attend the sacrament of reconciliation and for anointing their sick. The atmosphere inside the Abbey was so peaceful and quiet and was conducive to prayer.
Service began with the whole congregation joining in a hymn, as the priest took his place at the altar. I found that music played a major role in the activities of the Abbey and so did the Choral services rendered by the Choir of Westminster Abbey which is one of the best choirs that is renowned world wide. The choir comprised of twelve professional adults singers also called as Lay Vicars and 30 dedicated boys who belonged to the Residential Choir school.
James O’Donnell, the Organist and Master of the Choristers directed the choir very meticulously. The singing by the soloists and the choir was of a very high standard showing that a lot of hard work had been done to achieve it. The chief instrument used was the organ. All the hymns were sung by the soloists and choir and alternated between slow and medium paced rhythms. I really enjoyed attending the service at Westminster Abbey and was really impressed with the singing.
2. The second journal is about my visit to the Royal Free Music Society on Saturday the 15th of October. I went for both the rehearsal and concert of Mozart’s Mass in C minor conducted by Benjamin Wolf. The conductor Benjamin Wolf was welcomed as the main vocalists took the stage in front of the orchestra. The piece began with the Kyrie, softly with the violins and then the choir joined in unison. The soprano was quite talented and used good vocal techniques. After the soprano had rendered her lines, the whole choir reciprocated, by joining flawlessly in unison. The singing by the soprano and the choir alternated with each other and was strongly backed by the orchestra. The tempo that was maintained throughout was medium paced with good rhythm and ended in a soft chorus. The Gloria that was performed by the orchestra was filled with energy and enthusiasm from the beginning to the end. The piece began with a loud chorus where everyone joined in. As the piece progressed it alternated between the sopranos and altos on one hand and the tenor and bass on the other. In between were spots of softly sung music backed by soft playing of the orchestra. The instruments used to play Mozart’s Mass in C Minor were violins, cellos, double bass, saxophones, drums, trumpet and the trombone. I liked Mozart’s Mass in C Minor for its brilliance in construction as well as execution by the singers and the orchestra. I really enjoyed witnessing the rehearsal as well as the concert. 3. On Thursday the 27th of October at 1pm, I visited St. Johns Smith’s Square to see Jonathan Vaughn playing on the organ. The lunchtime concert comprised of the J.S Bach Prelude in Eb BWV522. Three Chorale Preludes on Nun komm, der Heiden Heiland; Canonic Variations on Von Himmel Hoch, da komm ich her BWV769; Fugue in Eb BWV522, Liszt Prelude and Fugue on B-A-C-H The J.S Bach Prelude in Eb BWV522 began brightly by Jonathan Vaughn with an apt use of rubato alternated with slight tempo variances to make it more effective. It was a technically brilliant piece that needed a lot of skill and effort to make it sound pleasing and the organist did an excellent job which proved his skill and ability at the organ as well as his mastery over the piece. Three Chorale Preludes on Nun komm, der Heiden Heiland by Bach –Busoni was a soft organ recital that was so mellow and uplifting. The piece was very melodious and the rhythm alternated between slow and medium paced. Liszt Prelude and