Choir celebrates 175th anniversary with special cathedral concert

Torbay Weekly

The longest-established choir in the South West - comprising members from across Devon - is celebrating its 175th birthday.

The Exeter Philharmonic Choir is marking 175 uninterrupted years of performance with a special concert at Exeter Cathedral on Saturday March 12.

The choir will be performing Brahms’ great work, Ein deutsches Requiem, joined by the renowned London Mozart Players and two of the UK’s most exciting soloists: soprano Jessica Cale (winner of the 2020 Kathleen Ferrier Award) and baritone Timothy Nelson.

The programme also includes Lo, The Full, Final Sacrifice by Gerald Finzi, a rare opportunity to hear this piece accompanied by a full orchestra.

Since the choir was founded in 1846, it has achieved the remarkable feat of performing in the city every year, despite wars and pandemics. This includes performances in 2020 and 2021, immediately before and after the Covid-19 lockdowns.

The Choir’s audiences and 120-strong membership are drawn from across Devon; a true Devon-wide choir that’s always on the lookout for new members.

Director of Music Howard Ionascu is a highly experienced conductor, and his other choirs include the renowned Winchester College Chapel Choir. Howard says: "Performing  Brahms’ Ein deutsches Requiem, accompanied by the brilliant London Mozart Players, will be the highlight of our 2021/22 season. It’s always exciting to perform in the awe-inspiring surroundings of Exeter Cathedral, especially when we get to combine the choir’s sound with that of a world-class orchestra and two outstanding soloists.”

Exeter Philharmonic Choir’s 175th season concludes in May in slightly less familiar territory, with a jazz concert at the Holy Trinity Church in Exmouth.

The EPC website has full details and booking links for both concerts: