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Singers Prepare For Church Music Festival

Choirs from all points of the compass are coming together to sing in heavenly harmony at the International Church Music Festival in Coventry in June.

The festival, which visits Coventry biannually, features more than 800 choral singers from across the world.

The singers will come together for a four-day celebration of church music in the city. Around half of them are from church choirs in the United States.

Coventry Cathedral provides the focus for the festival, which runs from 21–24 June, and acts as host to four main concerts.

But for 2000 there will be a different approach, with the highlight being a free open-air concert in Broadgate.

Countries represented at this year’s event include, Bulgaria, Ghana, Greece, Israel, India, The Netherlands, Poland and the Slovak Republic.

Many of the countries are sending singers in the shape of scholarship choirs, who will be lodging with local families and sharing their talents in music workshops for Coventry children.

They will also take part in two international concerts held on the Thursday and Friday evening.

Local schoolchildren will play their part in the festival by attending the Friday afternoon schools concert.

The main feature of the festival will be the Gala concert held on Saturday evening, conducted by Sir David Willcocks.

Sir David is a former Director of the Royal College of Music who conducted massed choirs and trumpeters for the VE and VJ commemorations in London.

Festival Co-ordinator Claire Monks said:

 “Coventry’s International Church Music Festival is one of the largest festivals of its type in the country and will have a greater community focus this year, with free outside concerts in the city centre, workshops in schools and the ever popular schools concert”.

It is the ninth time the city has hosted the International Church Music Festival, which started in 1984 and alternates between Coventry and Bern in Switzerland.

The festival is organised by US-based Fest Corps Inc, in partnership with Coventry Cathedral and Coventry and Warwickshire Promotions.
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CWN / Religion / Coventry Cathedral / 13 Apr 00

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