MUSIC REVIEW - South Holland Singers. William LLewellyn’s On Earth In Concert Sing and Requiem by John Rutter, St Mary and St Nicolas Church, Spalding

The South Holland Singers and Mozartchor Choir of Speyer, Germany, at St Mary and St Nicolas Church, Spalding.
The South Holland Singers and Mozartchor Choir of Speyer, Germany, at St Mary and St Nicolas Church, Spalding.

Choir puts on rousing tribute to one of their own

Two of the most moving orchestral pieces of the last 30 years were sang by the South Holland Singers at Spalding’s parish church on Saturday.

Francis Hanson was a driving force behind the South Holland Singers and it was his great love.

Robin Carter, conductor, the South Holland Singers

John Rutter’s Requiem, first performed in 1985, and On Earth In Concert Sing, commissioned by Boston Choral Society and first performed at the town’s St Botolph’s Church in May 1994, reverberated around the perfect setting of St Mary and St Nicolas Church.

Conducted by King’s Lynn-born Robin Carter and accompanied by the Lincolnshire Chamber Orchestra (for requiem only), the concert was a fitting tribute to the choir’s founder member and chorister at St Mary and St Nicolas for 80 years, Francis Hanson MBE who passed away on April 11.

Before the concert, Robin said: “Francis was a driving force behind the choir and it was his great love, as was his love of the church choir of which he was a member from the age of five to the age of 85.

“He had a wonderful, strong, rich baritone-base voice and he loved singing.

“I got to know Francis 16 years ago when I became conductor of the South Holland Singers and he was a great support to me and, I’m pleased to say, a good friend.

“We will all miss Francis Hanson dearly.”

Review by Winston Brown