Female member of the Adult Chorus et al. in Christ Church, Spitalfields, East End of London - between 22 June, 2005 and 23 June, 2005
[Email dated 27 June 2005]
I have decided to keep the score that we rehearsed from…
Taking part in the cantata was fantastic, challenging and rewarding in equal parts. Friends who came to see it thought the music was excellent and felt that they were privileged to have seen the performance. The children and seniors were a particular hit, in fact my gran said that she remembers singing song of the shirt as a child.
'On Spital Fields' thank-you messages. https://led.kmi.open.ac.uk/entity/lexp/1597833347766 accessed: 5 March, 2024 (We are grateful to Judith Serota, OBE, for making available materials relating to the production and evaluation of ‘On Spital Fields’, including access to private letters, postcards and emails from audience members and others involved with Spitalfields and the wider community.)
Listening tohide composers
|between 22 June, 2005 and 23 June, 2005
|in the company of others, indoors, in public
The Song of the Shirt’, a poem by Thomas Hood, 1843, centres on a Mrs. Biddell, a destitute widow and seamstress. Her story became a focus for opposition to the conditions of the English working poor. The aim of the ‘On Spital Fields’ project was to devise, rehearse and perform a community cantata involving older people, adults and children from Tower Hamlets and a team of professional musicians and animateurs. The twelve pieces comprising the cantata tell the story of Spitalfields, based on fictional texts and historical documents relating to East End London. Makers included composer Jonathan Dove, librettist Alasdair Middleton, Gerry Cornelius conductor and Clare Whistler, director. Pupils from Osmani and St Anne’s primary schools and Mulberry School for Girls formed the children’s choirs (pupils from additional local schools participated in workshops to develop the project). Also performing were the Wessex Singers (Tower Hamlet’s choir for the over 50’s), The Joyful Company of Singers, an SATB choir and a community chorus, students from the Royal Academy of Music and Chroma Ensemble. The Society of Royal Cumberland Youths rang the bells of Christ Church, Spitalfields, its completed restoration celebrated by ‘On Spital Fields’, before both evening performances on 22 and 23 June 2005. Dove’s score is dedicated to Christopher Robert Vaughan (1961-1999), a passionate supporter of Spitalfields Festival. Vaughan left a legacy that helped to fund ‘On Spital Fields’. The community cantata was intended to celebrate Vaughan’s life.