With a reputation forged under Professor William Brooks, The 24 is now conducted by Robert Hollingworth, founder/director of I Fagiolini, one of the UK’s top professional vocal groups.
The 24 rehearses twice a week and prepares three (quite advanced) choral programmes for the department’s concert series as well as giving other occasional concerts elsewhere.
In 2017-18, the choir gave a programme of German music: early baroque masterworks by Schein and Schütz as well as partsongs by Brahms and Strauss. It also gave premieres of Thomas Simaku and student composer Owen Russell in a concert which included a commemoration of the Apollo 8 voyage in 1968, including video projections. Other performances included a sold-out Beverley Early Music Festival appearance and Byrd at a fascinating conference about Music and Health.
The choir has performed Gesualdo for the Department’s Gesualdo conference, Daniel-Lesur’s highly demanding Le cantique des cantiques and the UK premiere (60 years on) of Jean Françaix’s Ode a la gastronomie. The latter was featured on both BBC Radio 3’s The Choir and In Tune. In 2015, eight graduates of the choir joined I Fagiolini to record the Daniel-Lesur for Decca Classics which was released as Amuse-Bouche. In November 2016, the choir joined I Fagiolini again for a major Decca release entitled Monteverdi – The Other Vespers. In August 2015 The 24 was one of three featured choirs at the Association of British Choral Directors’ Convention. In spring 2017 the ensemble travelled to Florence to perform Striggio’s 40-part Mass with I Fagiolini, one to a part; with the same ensemble on 7 July they opened the 2017 York Early Music Festival with a surround-sound performance of Monteverdi’s 1610 Vespers in York Minster.
The choir has also given other premieres by David Lancaster and Ralph Bateman and recently performed music by Richard Rodney Bennett, Bo Holten, Ben Rowarth, Ian King, Adrian Williams and Eric Whitacre as well as much fascinating sixteenth- and seventeenth-century repertoire, including a focus on less well-known masterpieces by Byrd, White, Tallis and Mundy.
Membership of The 24 is open to all students and is by audition in week 1 of the autumn term.
Student composers are encouraged to enter The 24’s composition prize. Details can be found here.
Duarte Lôbo – Missa pro defunctis
Cornyshe – Salve Regina
Arvo Pärt – Magnificat
Giles Swayen – Magnificat
Obrecht – Salve Regina a 4
Taverner - Agnus Die from 'Western Wind Mass'
Johannes Brahms - Five Songs Op.104
Ockeghem – Requiem (selection)
Per Nørgård – Dream Songs
John Ward – Come, sable night
Richard Shephard – Most Holy Night
Elizabeth Maconchy – Nocturnal
Stacy Garrop – Songs of Love and Chaos
Howard Skempton - Two poems of Edward Thomas
Tippett - The Source; The Windhover
Rubbra – Five Motets