CANTERBURY CATHEDRAL’S FIRST EVER ALL-GIRL CHOIR
ANNOUNCES GROUND-BREAKING DEBUT ALBUM
‘CHRISTMAS WITH CANTERBURY CATHEDRAL GIRLS’ CHOIR’
Released 1st December on Decca Records
Canterbury Cathedral’s first ever all-girl choir will be releasing its debut album on Decca Records on 1st December. A female-led production, Christmas with Canterbury Cathedral Girls’ Choir is a major milestone in the Cathedral’s rich 1,400-year history and sees the iconic establishment expand its choral tradition for the 21st century. The album features beloved Christmas carols as well as a new composition by composer Rebecca Dale. The project is led by producer Anna Barry.
Often described as ‘England in stone’, Canterbury Cathedral is intrinsically linked to the country’s history and is home to the Archbishop of Canterbury, The Most Reverend Justin Welby, who wrote the foreword for the album. He says of the choir, “Since their formation in 2014, the girls have established themselves as a regular and natural part of the worshiping community at Canterbury Cathedral. By their singing, they lift the hearts of countless visitors and pilgrims to Canterbury, as they lift my heart as I worship with them.”
The new album features stunning renditions of traditional Christmas carols, including ‘Silent Night’, ‘Away In A Manger’ and ‘O Holy Night’. Composer Rebecca Dale has also written a brand new choral piece for the album entitled ‘All Is Still’ – this is the world premiere recording.
The Girls’ Choir of Canterbury Cathedral was founded in 2014 and members are aged between 12 and 18. The choir’s first appearance at Evensong, on the occasion of the feast of the Conversion of St. Paul, was attended by more than 600 people – the Cathedral was full and the service was widely covered by press across the globe.
Grammy-nominated producer Anna Barry is thrilled with this landmark album: “Girls were never previously included in the choir so this is a welcome change. It is an important moment in recording history so I’m delighted to be bringing these beautiful young voices together on a new album which captures the modern sound of Canterbury Cathedral at Christmas time.”
In addition to its regular liturgical duties, the choir has performed at numerous events of significance in the Cathedral. These include the service held to mark the 20th anniversary of the ordination of women priests and consecration of the Bishop of Europe. More recently, they sang at a service of dedication and unveiling of two royal statues, attended by the Queen and Duke of Edinburgh, and the consecration service for the first female diocesan bishop.
The new album Christmas with Canterbury Cathedral Girls’ Choir is set to bring joy and cheer this holiday season, continuing the great traditions of English choral music from one of the country’s most significant establishments.