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Three Choirs Festival Week
Saturday evening’s performance of Elgar’s ‘Dream of Gerontius’ is reported to have been the biggest grossing event in Three Choirs history. That’s even more remarkable when you think that our Cathedral is smaller than those at Gloucester and Worcester which will get their chance to set new records in the next couple of years. The stewards helped something close to 1,800 people into the building and, with one or two minor first night hitches, it seemed to be a pretty smooth operation but I’d be keen to hear how it was for audience members.
Plucking another popular song title from the air, ‘It never rains in Southern California’, nor it seems in Hereford for the beginning of the Festival. I felt sorry for Peder Nielsen, Bromyard’s Town Crier, sweltering in his impressive costume as he proclaimed the opening of this year’s event. It must have been pretty warm for the robed members of the Civic Procession, too, especially for the chap in that big furry Cap of Maintenance. The click of cameras and whirr of video recorders showed just what a spectacle that was for our hundreds of visitors. I’d love to be a fly on the wall as some of our overseas friends explain it all when they get back home.
Of course we did have a little rain on Monday but not enough to put off the first of the musicians taking part in the Three Choirs Plus events in High Town. For Mary Taylor (my co-conspirator in trying to publicise the Festival) and I having entertainment in the city centre was an important aim so we hope everyone is enjoying it.
Having been a small part of the team involved in the build up to the 2009 Festival it has been a real privilege to see it become a reality. So to all those who’ve played and sung so far and all those we are still to see and hear can I just say ‘Thank you for the music’ – and I promise no more song titles in future postings!