The Southern Cathedrals Festival 2018 - an introduction

The Southern Cathedrals Festival 2018 in Salisbury will feature performances by nearly 100 choristers and twenty-four adult singers from Chichester, Salisbury and Winchester Cathedrals between the 18-22 July.

Central to the theme of Remembrance is Elgar, the Great War and Wood Magic, a lecture recital given by the chairman of the Elgar Society, Dr. Steven Halls, in which he explores Elgar's Piano Quintet and Violin Sonata. The event takes place at 11.00 on Thursday 19 July in the Cathedral School and is followed by an afternoon concert in the cathedral of music and poetry on a war theme. This concert featuring three of Bach's virtuosic motets sung by a choir of over seventy boys and men from Chichester, Salisbury and Winchester Cathedrals, takes place at 13.30.

On the Friday evening the internationally renowned specialist in historical performance practice, Margaret Faultless, leads a period instrument orchestra accompanying the choirs in a performance of Handel's Coronation Anthems and Purcell's Te Deum and Jubilate. 

The girl choristers from Salisbury and Winchester will be joined by the men from all three cathedrals for the concert which takes place at the Cathedral's West End at 19.00. A total of five services will be sung during the festival, including a recording of Evensong by BBC Radio 3 (to be transmitted later in the summer) and there is a big screen organ recital by the former Assistant Director of Music at Salisbury Cathedral, Daniel Cook. Young musical talent will be on display in the Youth in Music concerts and the popular Late Night Bach by Candlelight piano recitals return. 

The final concert of the festival will see all three Cathedral choirs performing Brahms' sublime Ein Deutsches Requiem, accompanied by the orchestra, La Folia. Also on the programme is Elgar's Lux aeterna and Kelly's Elegy In memoriam Rupert Brooke.The concert takes place in the Cathedral on Saturday 21 July at 18.00.