Hailsham Choral

Singing with a great choir !

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Robin Gregory reviews our Autumn concert

“From the moment the choir appeared, to sing Douglas Guest’s short “For the Fallen”, the singers caught the eye by their admirable turn-out: men in D.J’s with red bow-ties, ladies in black with matching red jackets. And they sang wonderfully, from the quietest pianissimo to a blazing forte.”

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Next concert: Bach St John Passion - Saturday 17th March 2018

In March 2018 Hailsham Choral are performing Bach's wonderful setting of the St John Passion. This is a big concert for us and we're excited to have some superb soloists and an orchestra playing period instruments.

Concert poster
  • Bach: St John Passion
  • Sat 17th March
  • 7.30pm
  • All Saints Church
    Grange Road
  • Adults £15.00
    Under-18s £7.50
  • Tickets
  • Eastbourne Tourist Office
  • Camera Centre, Hailsham
  • wegottickets.com
  • and on the door
  • Conductor
  • Jozik Kotz
  • Orchestra
  • Sussex Baroque Players,
  • Leader: Julia Bishop
  • Soloists
  • Evangelist: Nick Pritchard
  • Christus: John Hancorn
  • Soprano: Bethany Partridge
  • Alto: Rebecca Leggett
  • Tenor: Paul Austin Kelly
  • Bass: Daniel Jordan

Our Soloists

Evangelist: Nick Pritchard

Nick Pritchard

Born in West Sussex, Nick Pritchard read music as a choral scholar at New College, Oxford and studied with Russell Smythe at the Royal College of Music International Opera School (RCMIOS) where he was the recipient of the Eric Joseph Shilling Prize. He was awarded the London Bach Society Singer's Prize in 2013 and is a Samling Artist.

Recent roles include Ruggiero in Caccini's La Liberazione di Ruggierio for the Brighton Early Music Festival, Tamino Die Zauberflöte and the title role in Albert Herring for the RCMIOS, Matthew in Mark Simpson's Pleasure for Opera North, Aldeburgh and The Royal Opera, Acis Acis and Galatea for Handel House with La Nuova Musica under Laurence Cummings, Aquilio in J.C. Bach's Adriano in Siria for the Classical Opera Company, Jephtha for The Academy of Ancient Music, and Telemaco The Return of Ulysses and Mercurio La Calisto, both for English Touring Opera.

Recent and future engagements include Lysander A Midsummer Night's Dream for the Aldeburgh Music Festival, Anphinomus The Return of Ulysses for the Royal Opera House, Ferrando Così fan tutte for Opera Holland Park, Henry Crawford Mansfield Park for The Grange Festival, Britten's Les Illuminations and Serenade with L'Orchestre de Chambre de Paris under Adrien Perruchon, Charpentier's Te Deum with the Early Opera Company at Wigmore Hall, Haydn's Die Schöpfung with Les Violins du Roy in Montreal and Quebec City, Bach's B Minor Mass with The English Concert under Harry Bicket, Bach's St John Passion with the BBC National Orchestra of Wales under John Butt (arias), Polyphony and the OAE under Stephen Layton (Evangelist), and in New York with the Choir of New College, Oxford. He is a new Rising Star for the Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment and was recently voted 'Breakthrough Artist in UK Opera' in the WhatsOnStage Opera Poll 2017.

Christus: John Hancorn

John Hancorn

John Hancorn is a singer, choral director and workshop leader. As an operatic baritone he appeared in principal roles at Glyndebourne, ENO, the Royal Opera House and Welsh National Opera and sang Christus in the Bach Passions with Sir Peter Pears as Evangelist on many occasions. Opera roles included Starveling (Midsummer Night's Dream) for Glyndebourne; Masetto (Don Giovanni), Don Fernando (Fidelio) for Kent Opera and Philistine (Samson and Delilah) with Placido Domingo at the Royal Opera House.

As an oratorio soloist John has performed the Mozart Requiem with the BBC Singers under Jane Glover; Israel in Egypt and Bach St John Passion with the Academy of St Martin in the Fields under Laszlo Heltay; and Brahms Requiem at the Hong Kong Festival. He was one of the Priests in Jesus Christ Superstar for the Concert Spectacular Scandinavian Tour.

John is music director of the BREMF Singers, Baroque Collective Singers, East Sussex Bach Choir and Eastbourne Choral Society and co-director of The Baroque Collective. Recent performances for the Brighton Early Music Festival include Bach Christmas Oratorio, Monteverdi Vespers and Purcell King Arthur.

John leads vocal workshops and masterclasses specializing in baroque repertoire including regular visits to Early Music Fora and 'Sing and Discover' days with Richard Wigmore throughout the UK. He examines at Trinity College of Music and teaches at the University of Chichester, East Sussex Academy of Music and Lancing College.

Soprano: Bethany Partridge

Bethany Partridge

Bethany began singing as a chorister at Exeter Cathedral. She went on to study music at Trinity College, Cambridge, where she was a choral scholar under Stephen Layton, and a Senior Academic Scholar. Bethany took part in the inaugural fellowship programme of National Youth Choirs of Great Britain from 2015-2016, and is currently an Associate Artist of professional ensemble, Tenebrae.

Bethany is in demand as a consort singer and sings with a number of professional choirs in London and beyond, including The Tallis Scholars, Polyphony and The Gabrieli Consort, and she is a founding member of Baroque ensemble, Amici Voices, which specialises in one-per-part performances of Bach. Bethany has made a number of CD recordings with various groups and has appeared live on BBC Radio 3 concert broadcasts.

Bethany enjoys performing as a soloist, and recent performances include Haydn's Nelson Mass, Bach's Magnificat, Handel's Dixit Dominus, Rossini’s Petite Messe Solenelle, Mozart’s Exsultate Jubilate, Monteverdi’s 1610 Vespers, Brahms’ Ein deutsches Requiem, Mendelssohn’s Elijah and Mozart’s Mass in C minor.

Bethany also has a keen interest in musical education and enjoys working as a peripatetic singing teacher in Putney and running vocal workshops with Tenebrae and London Youth Choir

Alto: Rebecca Leggett

Rebecca Leggett

Originally from Sussex, mezzo-soprano Rebecca Leggett is in her fourth year at Trinity Laban studying with Alison Wells. In May 2015, Rebecca appeared in the role of Flora (Turn of the Screw, Britten) for Opera di Firenze in Italy, and understudied the role on the Glyndebourne Tour 2014.

She is the winner of the TL Elisabeth Schumann Lieder Competition 2016 and also a finalist at the Junior Kathleen Ferrier Award 2015 and TL English Song Competition 2017, all with pianist Ashley Beauchamp. Opera roles include: Charlotte in the world premiere of Stephen McNeff’s opera Banished for Trinity Laban, chorus/Zerlina (cover) in Don Giovanni for Headfirst Productions, Third Spirit in The Magic Flute for Hampstead Garden Opera, chorus in Carmen and a Gossip in Britten’s Noye’s Fludde, both for Blackheath Halls Opera, chorus in Die Fledermaus for PuzzlePiece Opera, First Witch/Chorus in Dido and Aeneas with the Kantanti Ensemble, chorus/principal understudy in the community opera Imago and ensemble/soloist in the youth project Into the Harbour, both at Glyndebourne. Roles in opera scenes and workshops include Miss Todd in Menotti's Old Maid and the Thief, Cherubino in The Marriage of Figaro and Rosina in Il Barbiere di Siviglia with Annabel Arden.

Rebecca is a regular concert soloist, recent performances include: Alto soloist in Bach's St Matthew Passion; St John Passion and Christmas Oratorio, Mendelssohn's Elijah, Mozart’s Requiem, Britten’s Rejoice in the Lamb, Handel’s Messiah and Vivaldi’s Gloria. She was also the mezzo soloist for Aaron Copland's In the Beginning with the Trinity Laban Chamber Choir conducted by Stephen Jackson.

For the past three years, Rebecca was a choral scholar at the Old Royal Naval College Chapel Choir with Ralph Allwood and was also a member of Genesis Sixteen 2016 lead by Harry Christophers and Eamonn Dougan.

Tenor: Paul Austin Kelly

Paul Austin Kelly

Paul Austin Kelly has performed leading operatic tenor roles with the NY Metropolitan Opera, the Royal Opera, Glyndebourne Festival, and Milan's La Scala opera houses, to name but a few. Originally a specialist in the Rossini repertoire, he sang numerous times at the Pesaro Festival, and recorded numerous CDs and several operas with the Opera Rara label.

On the concert stage, Paul has performed at the Théatre des Champs-Elysées in Paris, at Amsterdam's Concertgebouw, at the Kennedy Center and Lincoln Center in the US, and throughout the UK and the rest of the world, including appearances in Singapore and Kuala Lumpur. As a recitalist, Paul has performed with pianist Martin Isepp, and with his wife, pianist Carol Kelly he gave a recital in 2016 as part of the Nicholas Yonge Society Chamber Music series.

In 2003, Paul founded the award-winning children's music label, Walking Oliver, writing and recording a catalogue of twelve CDs for children. His collection of songs supporting UNICEF's Rights Respecting Charter is in use in primary schools throughout the UK.

A nineteen-year resident of Lewes, Paul maintains a busy teaching studio, both for voice and trumpet. He and his wife enjoy their proximity to the South Coast, to the Weald, and to the Downs for walking the dog.

Bass: Daniel Jordan

Daniel Jordan

Daniel was educated at Wells Cathedral School and as a choral scholar at St Johns College, Cambridge. He then won a scholarship to the Royal Academy of Music where he was supported by both the Academy and a Star Award from the Countess of Munster Trust.

Graduating with distinction from the opera course he worked with conductors such as Sir John Eliot Gardiner, Trevor Pinnock, Edward Gardiner, Daniel Harding and Kurt Masur, singing as a soloist with the English Concert, Monteverdi Choir and Florilegium. He was a member of the Choir of St Brides, Fleet Street, from 1999 until 2014 and has performed as a member of Pro Cantione Antiqua, the Clerks Group and the Kings Consort.

On the operatic stage he has worked with English National Opera, Scottish Opera, Grange Park Opera, English Touring Opera, the Opera Group, Opera North and the Festival DAix-en-Provence.

Daniel has been Director of Music at Eastbourne College since September 2015.

About us

Choir photo

We are a choir of about 65 singers based in Hailsham, East Sussex.

We perform at least four main concerts during the year, with programmes featuring anything from Bach (Christmas Oratorio, St. John Passion) to Beatles, Rossini (Petite Messe Solennelle) to Gershwin, Rutter (Requiem, Magnificat, carols) to Rogers and Hart.

We’re a sociable lot too, music workshops, coffee mornings, quizzes, even the odd pint of beer or glass of wine (or two)!

If you’re looking for a fast way to increase your circle of friends, as well as an opportunity to sing hugely enjoyable music go to the ‘Join Us’ page.


Our 58th Year !!!

You can find references to a choral group in Hailsham from the early 1930s, but it faded from view during the war - they probably had even more troubles recruiting tenors and basses then! The present Society was founded in 1961, so we are now in our 58th year and still going from strength to strength.

Thank You

We would like to acknowledge the generous support of Hailsham Town Council who have assisted us with a Grant.

Hailsham Town Council logo
We would also like to thank the Co-op Local Community Fund for their support which is much appreciated.
Co-op logo

This website is maintained by Simon Marsden; please get in touch if you have a comment or an issue to report.

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