CD or not CD?!
That is the question!
Surrey based Excelsis Chamber Choir and Clive Osgood are joining forces to make a CD of Osgood’s choral music. Excelsis Chamber Choir, under the Directorship of Robert Lewis, was honoured to be made Choir-in-Residence of award winning Grayshott Concerts in 2015 and is celebrating its 10th anniversary this year. Composer Clive Osgood is well known in Haslemere for his roles as Organist and Choir Director at St Bartholomew’s Church, and for his fine playing with Haslemere Musical Society, and the Waverley Ensemble. You may have seen his brand new commission, a short opera version of the fantastical A Midsummer Night’s Dream, which was recently premiered to great acclaim by Imagine That Productions at St Christopher’s Church, Haslemere. Osgood manages to fit his compositional work around teaching at Reed’s School in Cobham and a busy family life.
Excelsis Chamber Choir is renowned for its outstanding performances of classical choral works with the London Mozart Players and other professional orchestras, and has a close association with the works of Sir Karl Jenkins. As Choir-in-Residence of Grayshott Concerts they made a live recording of Sir Karl’s The Healer A Cantata for Peace in 2015, which was also broadcast on Classic FM. They have performed a number of Osgood’s works and at their recent concert in Haslemere they entranced the audience with Osgood’s beautiful anthems The Peace of God and Hymn to the Word.
Osgood has received national recognition for his compositional work from the BBC. He won a BBC Radio 4 competition in 2006 with his anthem Do Not Fear O Soil and at the end of last year he was one of six finalists in the hugely competitive BBC Radio 3 Carol Competition with his interpretation of the text Alleluia! A new work is come on hand. Osgood’s distinctive and accessible music is a bold mix of classical form infused with haunting melody, fabulous jazz harmonies, and the rhythmic excitement of Latin American music. This is contemporary classical music at its best.
Excelsis and Osgood are putting on fund-raising events and concerts to get their project off the ground and they have already had a number of very generous donations. A spokesman for Excelsis says: â€™We realise that in our interesting and often harrowing times there are currently many other causes which are worthy of people’s attention. It will take boldness, vision and huge generosity to help bring a beautiful project such as this to fruition. Any sponsorship support which Herald readers, or local businesses can provide will be very gratefully appreciated and acknowledged in the CD sleeve notes. We know that Haslemere places great value on its rich cultural life, and the availability of a CD of Clive’s music will be an opportunity to showcase the amazing talent of our local composer to a wider audience.