Friday, 25th May 2022

An egg-citing Easter for National Youth Choirs of Great Britain members as they return to Spring Residential Courses after 3 years!

More than 400 members of National Youth Boys', Girls' and Training Choir came together in April for their first spring residential course in three years.

The last in-person spring courses were held in 2019, before the pandemic hit. However, team NYCGB made sure no members missed out in 2020 and 2021 spring was held online. In line with our artistic theme for 2022, the repertoire for all choirs and courses was based around different interpretations of the term 'environment'.

The cracking spring began with the National Youth Choir course in Rickmansworth, followed by a unique collaborative concert with The Swingles Until It's Gone - music for our planet at Woolwich Works Fireworks Factory in London. 

Only a couple of days after the incredible concert, National Youth Training Choir's spring fun began! 116 members of Training Choir met at Tudor Hall School in Banbury for a week of vocal training, rehearsals, learning, engaging and of course - catching up! Training Choir had a chance to meet with Lisa Robertson (NYCGB Composer 2020) via Zoom who gave a session all about her piece, Tell it to the Bees. The young singers in Training Choir also had time for reflection, discussion and contemplation in a brave space with Principal Conductor Greg Beardsell, and Head of Artistic Planning & Participation Ruth Evans. Members were given an opportunity to try conducting, as Assistant Conductor Tori Longdon provided an exciting workshop for members. The week came to an end with a dynamic, original concert The Earth Is Tired. Pieces included The Garden by Bobby McFerrin, Ave Maria by Holst and There's Only So Much Oil In The Ground by Emilio Castillo & Stephen Kupka.

The next step in our egg-stra busy Easter was the National Youth Girls' Choir course in Uppingham. 210 young singers from around the country headed to Uppingham School for a busy week of singing, which even included a recording session! The choir, conducted by Joanna Tomlinson (National Youth Girls' Choir Principal Conductor) and Katie Thomas (Assistant Conductor), recorded a beautiful new commission A Short Story of Falling by Joanna Marsh which was released TODAY on all major platforms, listen here. They also recorded The Silver Swan by Oliver Tarney and Truth by Andrea Ramsey - both pieces will be released on our record label soon. 

Last but most certainly not least, 119 singers from National Youth Boys' Choir of Great Britain joined together in Reading for a busy week of song writing, rehearsing, singing and learning. A highlight from the Boys' Choir course included a text-writing workshop with Hazel Gould for their brand new commission with Oliver Tarney which will be recorded in Yorkshire this summer, and premiered later in the year. Members of Boys' Choir have special vocal training for Cambiata Voices, led by Principal Conductor Lucy Joy Morris. 

Both the Boys' and Girls' Choir courses ended with spectacular performances for parents, guardians, family and friends to enjoy. Keep an eye out for announcements of public concerts from National Youth Girls' and Boys' Choir in the summer!

Interested in seeing more of what members of the National Youth Choirs got up to this Spring? Check out our Instagram highlights (click N Y C G B on our profile) and watch our spring stories! 

We are most grateful to Christine Evans for kindly funding the Oliver Tarney and Joanna Marsh new music commissions. Until its Gone was kindly funded by the John S Cohen Foundation and Dorico, NYCGB's Principal Innovation Partner.