On Saturday 20th July, the Jacobean Singers performed Purcell for a loyal audience in Vaucluse. The peaceful St Michael’s Anglican Church was a beautiful venue for the performance.
The Jacobean singers is an established group of predominantly older singers with a loyal audience of locals who came to support them. My own reason for coming was because I love Purcell’s music. The program consisted of his Evening Service in G minor and short opera, Dido and Aeneas.
A few weeks ago I listened to Dr. David Hill’s remarks that singing is good for the brain as well as the body. And these singers proved it. It was clear they enjoyed making music.
There were some lovely moments, such as the flourishes at the end of the Gloria. Dido and Aeneas‘ Act 1 “Fear no danger” duet and chorus was the most secure and throughout, the strongest and most expressive performance was Dido and the Sorceress sung by Amanda Muir and Joanna Wojciechowska.
There was safety in numbers. The roles of Belinda, second woman and the Witches were sung by a small group of choristers together, and they supported each other musically as well as technically.
Although sometimes it felt like the choir was buried in their scores, it also occurred to me during the concert that the scores are for everyone to enjoy. That includes performing it.
Their joy of making music was at times overtaken by nerves, but when they worked past this, they definitely had something to say.
The Jacobean Singers will be repeating this concert on Saturday 14th September at 2:30pm in St. Michael’s Anglican Church, Vaucluse – don’t miss it!