top of page

Previous Events

Messiah at Christmas

14 December 2019

Traditional, but never dull, both choir and a wonderful company of soloists found new drama and poignancy in a performance which all of us enjoyed - a packed cathedral absorbed in the celebration, the reflection and the joy of Christmas. A special evening, in a setting so suited to Handel's music, with Helix Ensemble and Tom Corfield adding pace and sparkle. Not just another Messiah!

A new insight into Mozart Requiem

2 November 2019

Aptly on All Souls' Day, we explored new details in the Duncan Druce completion and together rediscovered Mozart's great epitaph - accompanied by the Derby Bach Orchestra and soloists, who brought their own contributions by Weber (Pete Glenville's fantastic clarinet playing!) and the sparkle of The Marriage of Figaro .

Rossini Petite Messe Solennelle

15 June 2019

Famously neither little nor solemn, the choir had huge fun with this piece, joined by friends Tom Corfield, Beate Toyka and Gill Bithell on keyboards - all creating an energetic and dramatic performance. Richard conducting admitted discovering new dramatic detail and humour in this work, which ended our season with a flourish!

Lauda Creatoris

6 April 2019

Ten years on from its premier, the choir and composer enjoyed rediscovering these lyrical settings of the poetry of St Francis and Gerard Manley Hopkins.

Bach at Christmas

24 November 2018

The wonderful setting and acoustic of Derby Cathedral once again enhanced the baroque glory of Bach's music, with original instruments from Nicolette Moonen's ensemble, a continuo with Hugh Morris, and some stunning soloist interpretation of the story of Christmas in recitative, aria and chorale. We welcomed back William Purefoy, Mark Wilde and Peter Savidge, as well as Elizabeth Cragg as our soprano - bringing to life Richard's appreciation of the musical detail.

The choir once again worked to produce a convincing rendering of the German text - we don't just do notes! The enthusiastic audience were able to enjoy a real favourite once again - former conductor John York Skinner congratulated the choir on the splendid and joyful sound, sharing in the occasion.


A fantastically festive end to 2017

9th December 2017

There were so many highlights in Derby Bach Choir's Christmas Brass and Voices concert on Saturday 9th December 2017 at St John the Evangelist's Church, Derby.  The singing from the children's choir from Old Vicarage School was exquisite, very skilful and captivating.  One of the Choir's guests had flown over from Germany, where she's lived for the past 30 years. She was so moved by the singing, as this was only the second time she has been back at Christmas, and they encapsulated her memories of Christmas.

 James Foulds directed the evening with his usual mix of relaxed good humour and serious awareness of the nature of the music.  His encouragement for individual choir members to take solo parts was another highlight with impressive results.  It was particularly moving to perform the winning carol from the BBC Radio 3 Carol Competition 2013, written by one of our very own sopranos, Jacqui Burley.

Derby Central Salvation Army Brass Ensemble accompanied us beautifully and we enjoyed their own selection of traditional and well loved pieces.

A Glorious evening of brass and choral music

18th November 2017

Derby Bach Choir's concert on 18th November was a first. We have never performed a programme in a main concert at the Cathedral with only Brass and Voices before, and for the audience and performers, it was a great success with lots of smiles all round.

The programme was chosen with music ranging from the 16th century with Monteverdi and Schutz to the present day  composer, Rutter. His 'Gloria' was the final item, and Derventio Brass really came into their own with an exciting accompaniment to this well known piece. For many, including our conductor, Richard Roddis, Parry's 'Blest Pair of Sirens' was the highlight of the evening. 'We made the most of the grand design and expressive words.'

Some of the choir were chosen to sing a semi chorus part, and some small solos. It was lovely to be able to showcase the talent we have within our fine choir.

Performance of World War Poems an emotive finale to our 2016/17 season

8th July 2017

                                        On a hot Summer's evening, we had the privilege of performing a selection of choral                                                   music spanning the ages at Derby Grammar School.  After enjoying picnics on the lawn                                             there was concert showcasing music from Purcell in 1694 right up to the premiere of                                                 music specially commissioned by Derby Bach Choir.  As part of our 1st World War project                                         in 2014 we approached the Derby Performance Poets group and invited the members to                                           write poems about war, suitable for setting to music for Derby Bach Choir to perform.                                               We received some 20 poems of very high quality and these were given to local composers                                         for them to choose one each to set to music. We were very proud to perform five of these pieces as part of this concert.  The results have proved what a wealth of talent there is in Derby and has been a very worthwhile example of co-operation between different sections of the community.  We thank both the poets and composers for their work, and the choir has enjoyed the opportunity to perform such emotive pieces. It was particularly good to welcome the poets and composers to the concert and for them to hear us perform their words and music.

Festive concert brought seasonal cheer to all

10th December 2016

                                        Derby Bach Choir enjoyed a very successful Christmas Brass & Voices Concert on        

                                        December 10th at St John The Evangelist Church, Bridge Street, Derby. The choir              

                                        was joined by Derventio Brass, and welcomed children from The Old Vicarage School,

                                        who entertained us all delightfully, skilfully signing their last Carol, Silent Night.

                                        Richard Hodges accompanied on the keyboard, and James Foulds conducted us all with

                                        easy skill, with a programme that ranged from the solemnity of Taverners' 'The Lamb' to

                                        the very unsolemn Jingle Bells, with much audience participation. We also sang many traditional carols, including one set to James' own arrangement.

The mood was very festive, helped by the free refreshments. It was a joyful way to finish 2016 and audience (and performers!) left in a suitably festive mood.

Rarely performed Stabat Mater thrills audience

20th November 2016


Derby Bach Choir, the orchestra, soloists and audience alike all really enjoyed this performance the rarely performed Stabat Mater by Dvorak.  This solemn major work combines  weight and depth with captivating lyrical episodes. Our conductor, Richard Roddis, brought the performance together with calm skill, and his appraisal was "Very moving and ultimately thrilling account of the Stabat Mater  Many memorable moments  - choir excelled itself and made a big impact. Soloists were amazing." 


The soloists, Yvonne Howard, Kate Symonds-Joy, Dominic Natoli and Peter Savidge were generous with their compliments too, as can be seen from the twitter exchanges. We received this response- It is a long, taxing sing and what struck me watching from the pew was  how well every individual was engaged and "making the right singing shapes", if that makes sense. So much commitment, so much precision, so much vocal connection. It was a joy to take part with you all."

Wrapping our season: Exciting Handel for a Summer Evening

6th July 2016










The choir sang this rarely performed piece on 2nd July at its old home at St John's to a good sized appreciative audience. The oratorio tells the Old Testament story of the plagues of Egypt which God sent to help Moses persuade the Pharoah to ‘Let his people go’. We sang about rivers of blood, plagues of frogs, flies, lice, locusts, hailstorms, and the final horror of the Death of the Firstborn. We heard the story of the Israelites flight, and how the Red Sea divides to allow their passage. The piece ended with the triumphant song to the glory of the Lord.


The choruses at times buzzed and  fizzed along with the action. The recits and arias were beautifully sung by soloists Gillian von Fragstein, Andrea McGregor and James Gallimore. Tom Corfield's organ accompaniment was stupendous! Once again, Richard's vision was realized to everyones' enjoyment, and he even had the good fortune to have found a previously undiscovered letter written by the composer, which was read for our edification and entertainment by one of his  descendants .......(at least I think that's what he said )

You Came & Sang: One of our largest yet!

21st May 2016


Last Saturday we held a tremendously successful Come & Sing Faure event in Ticknall. We were especially glad to welcome some Come & Sing first-timers from far and wide who joined us on the day, including 2 ladies who travelled all the way from Northants! As usual, the buffet dinner was excellent and our thanks must go especially to Annie & Jonathan, James, Jenny, Janet, Dave, the fantastic soloists and all the helpers. Let's hope we can make next year's even bigger and better.

Realising the Dream of Gerontius

15th November 2015


We were thrilled to perform the Dream of Gerontius on Saturday 7th November. It was a true privilege to work with the amazing soloists (Andrew Kennedy, Christopher Maltman and Leigh Woolf). The conductor, Richard Roddis, later said he was delighted, and proud of all the choir and orchestra. Many of the audience are still talking abut it - in a very complimentary way! Photos from the event can be viewed on our facebook page.

Tour-de-force performance in Paris

27th May 2015


The choir were delighted to perform in the stunning surroundings of La Madeleine in Paris this weekend. Planned and executed by our very own Jenny Casboult, choirs from around Europe joined us and Nottingham Symphony Orchestra in a performance of Verdi's Requiem. With an audience in excess of 1000 people, the event was one of the choir's largest ever undertakings and was a huge success. Photos from the weekend are now available to view at

Derby Telegraph Review of St Matthew Passion

17th April 2015


In March 2015, we performed Bach's St Matthew Passion at Derby Cathedral, with a full baroque ensemble. Click below to read the Derby Telegraph Review of the performance.

Dream team for Dream of Gerontius
A date for your diary - 7th November 2015

16th March 2015


We are delighted to announce that Andrew Kennedy, Christopher Maltman and Leigh Woolf will be joining us to perform this magnificent work. So tell everyone you can think of that this event is a real treat for Derby, a line up of prestigious soloists that would not be out of place in the great concert venues of the world!

Come and Sing 2015 Calendar

22nd January 2015


As well as our Come and Sing Haydn Nelson Mass event in May, there are many other opportunities to get involved with other local choirs in 2015. Get the dates in your calendar now with the full schedule  here.

Merry Christmas from Derby Bach Choir!

23rd December 2014


After the joys of Christmas is Coming at Calke Abbey, the choir extends warm wishes to our friends and members over the festive season.


Our next concert will be Bach's St Matthew Passion on 28th March 2015. Further details of this and other forthcoming concerts can be found under the events menu, including information about programmes and how and where to buy tickets.

Cristinel Bacanu - Violinist Biography

22nd November 2014


Following the interest shown in the exceptional performance of the Lark Ascending by solo violinist Cristinel Bacanu at our recent "Concert for Peace", please find below his biography. Our thanks once again goes to Cristinel for a stunning and sensitive performance of the work.

Concert for Peace great success

17th November 2014


Derby Bach Choir played its part in the 2014 centeneray commemorations of the First World War on Saturday 15th November at Derby Cathedral with a "Concert for Peace". Featuring works from Vasks, Vaughan Williams and Britten, a packed audience also enjoyed a performance of The Lark Ascending from the Derby Bach Orchestra. The unique event featured powerful images throughout the concert in addition to readings of letters from local soldiers and an exhibition of items from the war. 


Derby Bach Choir would like to thank all those who contributed to the success of this special concert.


Derby Telegraph Review of Verdi Requiem

6th April 2014

In March 2014, we performed Verdi's Requiem, collaborating with other choirs from the region and Nottingham Symphony Orchestra for a truly spectacular night of music. Click below to read the Derby Telegraph Review.

bottom of page