The Wellingborough Singers was founded in 1980 and over its more than forty year history has performed many of the great choral works.
Under the baton of our Musical Director, Lee Dunleavy, who follows in the footsteps of his five predecessors, we have enjoyed performing a range of music from sacred to profane. Over the years we have been accompanied as appropriate by full orchestras, harps, brass ensembles, sleigh bells, and organs, as well as numerous talented soloists. We have sung at the Royal Albert Hall, at the Derngate in Northampton, and at a number of venues in Wellingborough itself. Sometimes we return to favourites, but also enjoy expanding our repertoire with new works, or those less frequently performed that need to be rediscovered. We enjoy singing before an audience, but rehearsals are great fun, too.
Our first major choral concert was in March 1981, performing Purcell King Arthur, and since that time we have performed works including Berlioz Te Deum; Brahms Ein deutsches Requiem; Britten Saint Nicolas; Elgar The Dream of Gerontius; Fauré Requiem; Gluck Orpheus; Handel Alexander’s Feast, Judas Maccabæus, and Samson; Haydn Harmonie messe, Missa in tempore belli, Nelson Mass, and The Creation; Mendelssohn Elijah; Mozart Requiem; Purcell Te Deum and Jubilate; Ramírez Navidad nuestra; Rutter Requiem; Shearing Songs and Sonnets; Verdi Requiem; Vivaldi Gloria; and Vaughan Williams Toward the Unknown Region.
Since Lee joined us as Musical Director in 2017 we have tackled Handel Messiah, Haydn Missa Sancti Nicolai, Orff Carmina Burana, Mahler Resurrection Symphony, Puccini Messa di Gloria, and Forrest Jubilate Deo. Our performance of the Forrest received a standing ovation from an audience of just over 250! For it the choir were joined by a children’s chorus, soloists, a small orchestra, organist, and some extraordinary solo instruments – including marimba, djembe, hammered dulcimer, and erhu!
When the pandemic struck in March 2020 we were in the middle of preparing our first ever performance of Rossini’s Petite messe solennelle. Since that time we have been continuing to sing on Zoom, with repertoire from Corelli, Howells, Leonarda, and Vivaldi, and most recently we have begun preparations for what we hope will be our first live concerts back. One featuring another wonderful piece by Dan Forrest, Requiem for the Living, and another featuring a huge variety of uplifting music from the pen of Sir Arthur Sullivan.
You can keep up-to-date with our activities via our Facebook page – here is a link – and below you can watch a montage of historic photos of the choir, with a recording of part of our final rehearsal of Dan Forrest’s Jubilate Deo as the background music.