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June 25, 2018


Wonderful photos and tribute, Beth. You're so generous, wholehearted and beautifully articulate in your homage and appreciation of Patrick, the choir, the music and your own committment to all of it. I can imagine that many were moved to tears. Long may you continue to sing and to share your experiences.

This was the perfect tribute to Patrick. Thank you for your beautiful writing and evocative pictures. May I put a link to this blog in the next newsletter?

Inspiring tribute. I hope the transition to his successor is as painless as possible.

A wonderful tribute Beth... Patrick, what you have shared with us for so long - your experience, your love of music - is priceless... Thanks are not enough...

You've sung since you were seven, I've been trying to sing for a handful of months. As well as your skills I lack your hinterland in music. But at least we are both aware of what we owe our respective guides. V, my teacher, makes necessary repetition a continuous, happy voyage, ensuring it never lapses into drudgery. Last Monday she pointed out a strangely assertive chord typical of Purcell and of the period, a reminder that one of the privileges of my lessons is to brush against giants. It's more than just notes

You say (tellingly) that Patrick "often accepts blame for things that weren't really his fault, he never singles people out." In one-on-one tuition this becomes even more vital but errors must be identified. When the accompanying piano repeats what has just gone before, but with the defective note or phrase slightly emphasised, it's all the correction I need. And when V breaks off from the warm-up, laughing delightedly, with "Your best F yet!" I know where that F came from.

Music is pure endeavour. As you've rehearsed and sung with, and for, Patrick you've known that both your aims have been identical. In human relations this is a thrilling realisation: unity towards a worthwhile goal. Added to which are the responsibilities you've both shared towards the undefined congregation. For his sake I am sure you will continue to sing your best and, more sombrely, you will bear his example - about when to stop - in mind. The hard bit. Like saying goodbye.

Beth, I am one of those people who walked through the church door searching for a brief respite from my worries. The quality of the music did more than that for me. Your post is a beautiful tribute, it covers so many aspects both of the choir and of Patrick and includes the discomforting question which we all have to face at some point in our lives. Your short speech which I know during emotional moments can sometimes be a challenge to write, is a very touching and dignified one.I am sad to read this post since one wishes good things would go on forever, but that is what makes them worth what they are.

Thanks for writing this, Beth, and for everything you did to make this happen. Hard to believe he’s gone!

This is lovely. Bittersweet, but lovely.

Lovely piece honoring your choirmaster. And I expect you are among those who are self-critical enough to know when it is time to bow out, though I hope you will not but retain the voice to sing on and on!

Is the collection available to other choirs?

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Who was Cassandra?

  • In the Iliad, she is described as the loveliest of the daughters of Priam (King of Troy), and gifted with prophecy. The god Apollo loved her, but she spurned him. As a punishment, he decreed that no one would ever believe her. So when she told her fellow Trojans that the Greeks were hiding inside the wooden horse...well, you know what happened.