I can’t quite explain it, but there always seems to be a vibe in the buzz when performers and audience start arriving for a concert that signals: We’re in for something special!
And last night in St. John’s Church, Wynberg it was just so. The concert began with Handel’s rousing Zadok the Priest, Alexander energising his musicians and singers into an immediate unity of spirit and intent, the resulting performance stunning the audinece into a burst of jubillant appreciation.
Organist Richard Haigh displayed his skills admirably on the St.John’s organ with a confidently pleasing rendering of Karg-Elert’s Nun Danket Alle Gott…….. which was followed by him accompanying the choir in Randall Thompson’s beautiful Choose Something Like A Star from Frostiana.
After the interval Alexander conducted the Rutter Requiem with a deep sensitivity, maintaining a total connectedness to each department of the choir, as well as the members of the small chamber orchestra and organist Richard Haigh and soloist Beverley Chiat. It was a most satisfying experience and St John’s proved to be an excellent venue.
It was quite evident, to me at any rate, that Alexander held this work in his heart and not only in his interpretive mind or by the reins of his impressive musical ability. His spirit of prayerfulness embraced not only the performers but also the audience resulting in what I could only describe as a most enriching and satisfying worshipful experience. As the applause finally subsided one was aware of a deep inner joy welling up in all who were there, performers and audience alike. It all seemed of the heart, from the heart, to the heart.
And, what more could any composer ask of his work?