MEMBERS of Island choirs and other local singers are being invited to take part in a national music project to celebrate the coronation of King Charles III.
Sing for the King will involve choirs from across the British Isles giving performances on Sunday 7 May of a new coronation anthem by Joanna Forbes L’Estrange, commissioned by the Royal School of Church Music.
Michael Wynne, director of music at St Luke’s Church, has secured a licence to perform the new piece, which follows in a tradition that owes much to the anthems Handel wrote for the coronation of George II.
Mr Wynne explained: ‘I was introduced to the piece by Imogen Nicholls, who runs the Musical Originals Singers. We decided that it would be a great thing to do, especially when we found out that no other performances had been registered in the Channel Islands.’
The new anthem, The Mountains Shall Bring Peace, is set to the words of the psalms and is described as being suitable for both services and concerts, having both moments of grandeur for larger choirs on formal occasions and an accessible melodic sweep lending intimacy for smaller groups and gatherings.
For the coronation project, the piece comes with a licence that allows individual copies to be printed to encourage participation by choirs across the country.
‘Central to the anthem is a big, singable tune, with a memorable melody that anyone and everyone can enjoy singing at the top of their voice,’ Mr Wynne said. ‘The words reflect not only the King’s faith but also his passion for the natural world and outdoors.
‘It is generally thought that the text of Psalm 72 was the coronation hymn of King Solomon in around 962BC. The words speak of the King’s role in relationship to his people and to God but best of all is the third verse which reads: “The mountains shall bring peace unto the people.” What could be more perfect?’ Mr Wynne asked.
On the day of the performance, all singers will meet for a rehearsal, having been sent a link to download the music, with files available to help them practise at home.
Participants can join the project by scanning a QR code available on the St Luke’s Church Facebook page or on the church website – stlukesjersey.com.