The twelfth Harrogate Festival Choral Course will run from Sunday 18th to Friday 23rd August 2019 at Ampleforth College (www.ampleforth.org.uk) which nestles, in a wonderful hillside setting, on the edge of the North Yorks Moors.
Registration is between 3.00 pm and 4.45 pm and the course begins officially with a welcome meeting and dinner followed by the first full choir rehearsal. The evening will conclude with a drinks reception, as old friendships are renewed and new ones are formed.
Throughout the course, rehearsals will take place in the morning, late afternoon and early evening in Big Study.
Afternoon activities are optional and singers can use their free time as they wish. There is so much to see and do in Ryedale where National Trust properties abound, small towns, such as Helmsley and Pickering, offer quality shopping and excellent tearooms, the walking is excellent and Scarborough, on the coast, is only thirty miles away. Some may like to avail themselves of the excellent sports facilities available at the on-site St. Alban’s Sports Centre which includes a 25m heated pool. There are public swim sessions available in the afternoon for a nominal sum alongside squash, tennis and badminton.
On Monday evening, due to popular demand, we will see the return of our 'Think and Drink' quiz night (right) and then on Tuesday we host ‘Ample Talent’ which gives a platform to any individuals who wish to showcase their talents. This has been a tremendous success for the past three years and we hope for an equally entertaining evening in 2019.
Vocal master classes, for which there is no additional charge, will take place on Thursday afternoon. Singers can volunteer to take part or sit back and relax as members of the audience.
On Wednesday evening, at 7.30pm, we shall present 'Drink, Drink, Drink!' at The Windmill, an evening of themed music, which will involve everyone, singers and soloists alike.
On Thursday evening at 7.30pm, we shall perform, as the Harrogate Festival Chorus and Orchestra, conducted by Thom Meredith, Rachmaninov's Bogoroditse Devo, Finzi’s Magnificat and Rossini’s Stabat Mater, in the magnificent setting of the Abbey Church. Rehearsals will be held in the venue during the day.
Departure is after breakfast on Friday 23rd.
Participants are encouraged to enjoy all aspects of the course by attending on a residential basis. Single or twin-bedded accommodation is available, all ensuite. However, we appreciate that singers from the local area may wish to take part in the excellent music-making opportunities without the need for accommodation on site. For full details of residential and non-residential rates for both singers and non-singers, please refer to the 'Rates' pages.
We are also pleased to offer additional activities in the afternoons for those who wish to be involved. These, such as the annual guided walk, have been very successful previously. Last year, for a small fee, we offered a workshop by Fr Alexander on Plainchant and, in the wonderful dining room at Gilling Castle, a talk by Sarah Kenny on Stained Glass Restoration. This year's activities are in the process of being confirmed.