A little about our history
Radlett Choral Society celebrated 60 years of singing in 2014. Over the years we have had 6 musical directors, and sung in venues from the Albert Hall and St Albans Cathedral, to local parish churches.
The choir was the brainchild of Peter Freeman, the organist of Radlett Congregational Church, who then invited Alan Breed to conduct the fledgling choir. The Borehamwood Choral Society supplemented the numbers when they merged with Radlett in 1961 and the London Colney Society then joined in 1967. Alan Fox took over in 1967, his tenure included taking part in a performance by 1,000 voices of Handel’s ‘Messiah’ at Alexandra Palace, conducted by Yehudi Menuhin. The choir’s 3rd musical director, Ewart Hopkins joined in 1974. This period marked a number of successes at the St Albans Music Festival as well as visits to and by choirs from Vriezenveen in The Netherlands, and Louveciennes in France. The Dutch and French choirs also visited Radlett and sung with us. Ewart’s stint lasted for 24 years before Clive Fairbairn took up the baton in 1996. Foreign exchanges continued with Radlett’s twin town of Louveciennes and a one-off trip to the other twin of Lautertal in Germany where the choir joined with the roughly 200 strong local choirs to sing Beethoven’s ‘Ode to Joy’. From 2011 Roger Sayer was our musical director until leaving us to take up the post of musical director to Temple Church in London. In September 2013 Alexander Flood joined Radlett Choral Society as musical director.
Over the last 60 years we have sung a wide variety of music, from Handel and Bach, Mozart and Mendelssohn to Van Dijk’s ‘San Gloria’, Madrigals and opera choruses. We are a member choir of the St Cecilia Festival Society, along with the Hardynge Choir, St Albans Chamber Choir and St Albans Symphony Orchestra which gives us the opportunity to sing larger pieces at St Albans Cathedral– most recently, during October 2015, we performed Dvorak’s ‘Requiem’.
A hallmark of the Radlett Choral Society is its friendliness; we meet every Monday evening and work hard but also have fun!