Georgian historical choir to put on concert for church funds

The Greenwood Quire. EMN-141017-143506001
The Greenwood Quire. EMN-141017-143506001

The Aslackby-based Greenwood Quire will be performing a concert to raise funds for the nearby church of St Andrew’s at Haconby.

The short concert of words and music will be tonight (Friday in aid of church funds).

During the 1700s most churches in England had a raised wooden singers gallery, including Haconby.

From this gallery at the west end, parishioners would lustily perform the quirky psalms and hymns which had grown up in England in the mainly Georgian days between banning of music in village churches, after Cromwell and the Puritans, to the restitution of the Church’s musical control leading to Hymns Ancient and Modern in 
1861.

The Greenwood Quire, in full Georgian costume, re-creates those days, when the villagers usually had more say over what was sung in church than the vicar.

The concert not in the musician’s gallery, now long gone, will tell the tale of the rise of the amateur church and chapel quires, and amusing stories from Thomas Hardy, whose own father and grandfather played in a village quire, about their sad demise.

Unlike present-day choirs, and just like the old village ones, the Greenwood Quire features its own amateur 
musicians as well as singers, on violins, flute and viola.

There’s even a serpent on the tenor line (notoriously difficult to play but with a wonderful sound), and a trombone with the basses.

The performance starts at 7pm for 7.30pm start.

Tickets are priced at £7, including wine or soft drink and nibbles, and are available from Edwina Male on 01778 
571008.