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Requiem To Mark Cathedral Bombing

Coventry Cathedral is to mark the 60th anniversary of the bombing of the city with a performance of Benjamin Britten’s War Requiem.

The piece, which was composed for the opening of the cathedral in 1962, will take hundreds of musicians to perform it as it uses a full orchestra, choir and chorus.

It will be played on 14 November at 7.30pm in front of the West Screen, with the ruins as a backdrop.

Earlier in the day former Assistant Secretary General of the United Nation Graf Hans von Sponeck will be presented with the Coventry International Prize for Peace and Reconciliation.

The prize, donated by Richard Branson, has now been running for two years, and will be presented at 3.30pm in the ruins.

The Cambridge University Musical Society will be providing the orchestra for the event, and St Michael’s Singers will accompany them in the chorus.

The Choristers of Coventry cathedral will for the boys’ choir, while the soloists are Julie Kennard, James Gilchrist and Stephen Varcoe. The performance will be conducted by Stephen Cleobury.

Acting Dean of the Cathedral, Stuart Beake, said:

”The War Requiem is a powerful piece of music which means a great deal to us, because it was composed for the rebuilding of the Cathedral.

“To be able to perform this piece on the 60th anniversary of the destruction of the old cathedral and so much of the city is a wonderful opportunity.”

Tickets for the concert are £16 and £12, with £2 off for concessions. A donation has allowed some Coventry school children to get free entry, and a Peugeot car will be auctioned off to raise money for the concert and the improvement of disabled access in the cathedral.

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CWN / Religion / Coventry Cathedral / 17 Oct 00

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This page modified on 10 November 2008 09:49:15AM