The Yorkshire Philharmonic Choir (YPC) is absolutely delighted that the newly appointed Archbishop of York, the Most Rev. Stephen Cottrell, has agreed to continue the long association of his position with it, by agreeing to be its new Honorary President, as were his two predecessors.
This is a great honour for YPC. Proud of being a great Yorkshire choir and a leading choir in the North of England, this continuing relationship with the Archbishop of York is fitting for a choir which prides itself on both the excellence of its performances, and of course, its strong association with Yorkshire and the North.
The YPC wishes the Archbishop well in his new and important calling. Clearly he is going to be very busy – but hopefully he will find some time to come to listen to YPC perform beautiful music, expertly performed.
Stephen was one time Diocesan Missioner and Bishop’s Chaplain in the Diocese of Wakefield so will know Wakefield Cathedral well – one of the venues frequently used by YPC for its performances. He will be welcomed back with much warmth.
Covid 19 has had a big impact on choirs and music makers throughout the world. For YPC it meant the cancellation of an exciting programme of music. However, thanks to the enthusiasm and skill of Andrew Padmore, YPC’s Musical Director, Thomas Moore, its Accompanist, and Diane Heath, who develops and maintains the website, YPC members have continued to work hard – rehearsing (on line) every week, exercising their voices, refreshing their current repertoire and learning new works – so that once it is safe for public performances to take place, it is ready, willing and able to perform, with its voices at their best – with well know pieces polished to perfection, and new works learned and practised.
And to get the choir's new year off with an exciting start - it is preparing the glorious Brahms Ein Deutsches Requiem (a German Requiem). A wonderful piece - and a marvellous work to showcase the YPC's choral skills but also offering some challenges, not least of which will be mastering accurately the German text.
Its new Honorary President, Stephen Cottrell, is embarking on an enormous new challenge – a new journey into a new and different world. YPC hopes that his new relationship with them will give him pleasure, joy and inspiration. For YPC, it is a privilege, and of course, as a Yorkshire choir, they will be very keen to make sure they ‘do him right proud’. And if I know YPC as well as I do, they will!