July 6th 2019: Open Rehearsal


10.30am Dore Abbey, Abbeydore

Music for Choir and Cello including Bach, Haydn and Tavener

Want to see how a live classical music concert is put together? Worried the kids won’t sit through an entire concert? Why not join us for the rehearsals instead.

Note, this is not a full concert.  Rather a great opportunity to hear The Elysian Singers rehearse experiencing how a leading choir, talented conductor and an acclaimed international cellist work together to put on such performances.  See below for further details.


Open Rehearsals give a sneak-peak.  This is not a full concert.  You'll experience just what it takes to create a professional choral performance in the company of one of the UK's leading chamber choirs, The Elysian Singers, and some of the music that they will be performing during the evening concert.

In addition, you'll gain a fascinating insight into how two experienced musicians work together. These include leading conductor Sam Laughton and international cellist, Amy Norrington.

The rehearsal will take place in Dore Abbey, starting at 10.30am.

The less formal nature of an open rehearsal makes it an ideal opportunity to bring all the family. It offers a chance to introduce younger family members to live music.  Also the freedom to leave if the need arises.  Finally, if the weather's nice, why not bring a picnic and enjoy the wonderful abbey grounds.

The Programme

JS Bach              Cantata No.112 ‘Der Herr ist mein getreuer Hirt’

Joseph Haydn  Cello Concerto No.1

John Tavener    Svyati

Joseph Haydn  Missa Sancti Nicolai

Attending Open Rehearsals

We’re delighted to be able to give audience members the opportunity to attend this rehearsal; however, please remember that, as it is a working rehearsal, it is important that the performers are not distracted. We ask that all audience members ensure that they don’t make any noise, including applause, during the rehearsal.

Please be aware that you may not hear every piece planned for the evening concert.  It may also not be possible to hear everything the conductor says.

Rehearsals are scheduled to last for 3.5 hours, including a mid-session break. If you arrive late, you may not be able to enter the Abbey until there is a break. Rehearsals may finish early at the discretion of the conductor without notice.

Video/audio recording and photography are strictly forbidden.

Additional information

Ticket Type

Family (2 adults and 2 children under 18, Adult, Student 12-18 years, Child under 12 years

The Elysian Singers of London is one of the UK’s leading chamber choirs. Founded in 1986 by Matthew Greenall, the group quickly developed an interest in contemporary music, giving world premières by a number of composers including John Tavener who, from 2002 until his recent death, was the choir’s Patron. Sir James MacMillan recently agreed to become the choir’s new patron.

Conductor Sam Laughton juggles dual careers as a barrister and musician. He has been musical director of The Elysian Singers since 2000. Together they have made frequent appearances on radio and television,  also making a number of acclaimed commercial recordings. He is also Director of the Craswall Consort, the Chiltern Camerata, and the Trinity Camerata.

Amy Norrington enjoys a varied career as chamber musician, soloist and guest principle cellist, and is the founder and Artistic Director of the acclaimed ‘Festival Resonances’.

She is professor of cello at the Lemmens Institute in Leuven, Belgium and gives masterclasses regularly at major European music schools and festivals.

The Craswall Consort is made up of musicians many of whom have played in the summer  orchestral concerts as the Craswall Players.


Venue: Dore Abbey, Abbeydore

Venue Website: http://www.doreabbey.org.uk/

Address: Dore Abbey, Abbeydore, Herefordshire, HR2 0AA, United Kingdom

Description: A Brief History

A photo of the screen at Dore Abbey venue for Concerts for Craswall summer concerts
The Screen Dore Abbey

The Abbey was founded in 1147 by French Cistercian Monks from Morimond. The construction of the present stone buildings in the ‘new’ Early English style started in 1175 and was consecrated in 1280.

Having avoided being razed by Owen Glendower in 1405, the Abbey was suppressed (dissolved) by Henry VIII in 1537 and the buildings sold to John Scudamore. All the monastic buildings, the nave and roof of the Abbey were dismantled and the stone sold by Scudamore. All that remained (i.e. the present Abbey) was left as a roofless ruin until c1630.

John Scudamore’s great-great-grandson (John Viscount Scudamore) had no male heir, all his sons having died at birth or soon after. Archbishop Laud suggested that his ancestor had perhaps overdone the commercial benefits of the dissolution and that he should “consider his conscience”. Restoring the ruins into a Parish Church was deemed an appropriate penance and the rebuilt church was re-consecrated in 1634. Subsequently, Scudamore’s wife had a son who survived !

Laud had considerable influence on the restored church. The Screen through which the raised altar can be seen by the congregation was one of his innovations. His coat of arms together with those of Lord Scudamore and Charles I are on the Screen.

The church was further restored, first around 1700 when the wall paintings were created, and later around 1900 when the church was ‘shrunk’ into what had been the presbytery. The Church you see today has been little altered since the 1900 rearrangement.

Today The Abbey enjoys regular Church services, has a fine organ and a peal of 6 bells. It is also the venue for many concerts and local community activities, including Concerts for Craswall.