Cappella Novocastriensis was founded in 1960 by Dr Frederick Hudson to specialise in singing music for worship. It has about 40 members, and often sings unaccompanied.
Cappella sings in churches throughout the North East, as well as giving several major concerts each year. These concerts frequently promote unjustly neglected music: programmes have ranged through works from the Eton Choirbook to specially commissioned works by John Joubert, who is President of the choir. His Hymne of the Nativity received its première at the concert given in December 2000 in Holy Trinity, Jesmond. The choir also sings unaccompanied works by other modern composers such as Tavener, Gorecki, Whitacre and Lauridsen.
In recent years Cappella has given a number of performances of early music with period instruments provided by Newcastle Baroque, or on occasion by period brass ensembles such as QuintEssential and the English Cornett and Sackbut Ensemble. Monteverdi’s Vespers of 1610 has been performed on two occasions in Durham Cathedral.
In 1999, with the aid of the Lottery Fund, the City of Newcastle, the Sir James Knott Trust and individual subscriptions, Cappella commissioned a chamber organ from Neil Richerby of Lammermuir Pipeorgans. This organ, his “Opus 34”, has been a valuable asset to the choir’s performances.
In December the choir usually gives a candlelit concert. This concert has featured in succession Christmas music from Venice, Germany, England and France. The choir has also appeared on Tyne Tees Television’s With Voices Raised, and has produced two CDs of Christmas music, in 2002 and 2005, which have been featured on BBC Radio 3’s The Choir, and Classic FM’s The Full Works.
Chairman: Philip Thicknes
Secretary: Katherine Trafford
Treasurer: Jessica Anderson
Librarian: Judy Pratt
There are generally three concerts per season: in December, March and June. The venues are arranged annually, and are usually the King's Hall, Newcastle University, or St George's Church in Jesmond. The summer concert is often in another venue by arrangement.
Tickets are available from the singers, J.G.Windows of Newcastle upon Tyne, and online from www.wegottickets.com
Rehearsal dates for 2012/13:
The first rehearsal for the Spring concert will be on January 16th 2013.
Rehearsals are held on Wednesday evenings, 19.00 to 21.00, in St Andrews Church, Gallowgate, Newcastle.