Keswick Hall Choir, Norwich

MICHAEL DRAKE In a programme of celebration, for probably the first time a local audience heard Handel's Coronation Anthems in one concert, which was given a majestic opening with Zadok the Priest.

MICHAEL DRAKE

In a programme of celebration, for probably the first time a local audience heard Handel's Coronation Anthems in one concert, which was given a majestic opening with Zadok the Priest. After a few bars of hesitancy from the accompanying Brook Street Band, under John Aplin's positive direction, the choir gave a well-rounded performance with much subtle shading backed by sparkling trumpets.

The strongly-voiced young solo quartet were well matched in the more stately My Heart is Indicting, choir and instrumentalists matching in gradation of tone, then in turn, the anthems were more joyous. They were divided – not entirely convincingly – by Britten's Choral Dances from Gloriana, starting exclusively, moving to lovely legato lines and rich choral sounds.

The band showed what a well-integrated unit it is with great rhythmical sense in Bach's Magnificat. Real rejoicing was in mezzo-soprano Diana Moore's voice, Clare Platt, confident in her approach, tenor Joshua Elliott dealt easily with the running passages, but here baritone Rasmus Tofte-Hansen found the range too much. The choir was spirited and finally exultant with those brilliant trumpets. Not every event in the past couple of weeks could be part of it but the high class of this talented choir and their guests would surely have enhanced the festival programme.

t Keswick Hall Choir were performing atStAndrew's Hall.

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