Thousands of voices will raise roofs of Cathedrals and Churches around the country this year as a cappella group Broomdasher and multi-instrumental trio Coracle continue their From Pub to Pulpit tour.
Nine dates are currently confirmed for the concert, whose rousing climax has the whole audience, the organ and Choir joining in to turn folk songs into hymns. Discussions are also continuing about adding other special events to the tour.
Originally created to celebrate the versatility of Vaughan Williams, it is the only national touring event marking his 150th birthday. It has attracted large and joyful audiences, critical praise from both the folk and classical worlds and considerable radio airplay.
Vaughan Williams was an avid collector of folk songs and used thirty of the 800 songs he collected as the tunes for some of the most popular hymns in the 1906 English Hymnal he edited.
The second half of the concert recreates that folk song to hymn journey From Pub to Pulpit. A cappella folk group Broomdasher sing the folk song, instrumental trio Coracle create variations around it and – in a unique collaboration at every venue – the host organ, choir and the whole audience stand up to raise the roof by singing the hymn, often in arrangements specially written by the Director of Music.
“The aim was to broaden people’s knowledge of the breadth of Vaughan Williams’s work – from folk to classical to choral”, said Project Director John Palmer. “In 2022, we opened two Classical Music festivals, two Folk festivals, played large Cathedrals like Wells and Lincoln and popular folk festivals like Broadstairs. Everywhere the audiences wholeheartedly joined in and had a great time”.
Current 2023 dates:
Feb 11 Coventry Cathedral
Mar 4 Chelmsford Cathedral
May 20 Brecon Cathedral
June 8 Huddersfield Town Hall (Kirklees Year of Music)
June 9 Leeds (Workshops only)
June 10 St Silas Blackburn (with Blackburn Music Society)
June 17 St Thomas Kendal (with the Cumbria Festival Chorus)
July 1 All Saints Hove (With The Vaughan Williams School of Music and Brighton Voices)
July 27 Gloucester Cathedral (Three Choirs Festival with The Festival Chorus).
Coracle’s debut album Murmuration features tracks from the tour and Broomdasher are recording an album of their Vaughan Williams songs, Ingrave Epiphany.
‘Our Captain Calls’ – live: