Music to the Abbey’s ears

Archive photo of Huw Williams, Director of Music, with the Abbey Choir of Girls and Lay-clerks

It’s getting on for nearly two years since Bath Abbey Choirs have been able to take part in Choral Evensong but the good news is they will be back in business during the week on Thursdays and on selected Fridays at 5.30pm (during term time).

While the Abbey has been able to enjoy worship with its Choirs on Sundays, the beautiful words of Archbishop Cranmer’s Book of Common Prayer, combined with beautiful music is something that’s been missed at the Abbey on weekdays.

The church is also launching its new Bath Abbey Chamber Choir, directed by Shean Bowers, Assistant Director of Music at Bath Abbey. Comprising 10 sopranos, 4 Altos, 4 Tenors and 4 Basses, this exciting new choir will sing a number of Choral Evensong services throughout the year.

Bath Abbey in the evening sunlight.

The first weekday Evensong will be on Thursday, September 9th and will be sung by the Abbey Girls and Lay-clerks and continue weekly. Evensong will also be sung on Fridays on 17 September by the Abbey Boys and Lay-clerks and on 24 September by the new Abbey Chamber Choir, directed by Shean Bowers.

Huw Williams, Director of Music at Bath Abbey, said: “We are delighted to be re-commencing these services which are meditative, short and connect us to our Benedictine origins at Bath Abbey. It is a lovely end to the day, and in the past we have been able to welcome many regular members of the congregation as well as visitors to this service with significant numbers in the congregations at times.  If you haven’t been before, do come and join us the service usually lasts about 35 minutes”. 

Shean Bowers, Assistant Director of Music at Bath Abbey, said: “It’s very exciting to be introducing a brand new choir to Bath, a city which enjoys a long tradition of and is passionate about choral music. The Abbey Chamber Choir will be a mixed-voice adult choir performing repertoire from across the centuries in line with the liturgical requirements of the Abbey’s worship.

Our aim is to offer even more opportunities for keen singers who live or work in and around Bath to come and perform in the Abbey’s beautiful space, and we look forward providing a high standard of music for events and services that will complement and support the strong traditions of the Bath Abbey Choir.”