Didcot Choral Society was founded in 1958, and over half a century later we continue to perform a wide range of music throughout the year. We meet on Tuesday evenings at 7.30pm in St. Peter’s Church, Newlands Avenue, Didcot. There is no audition, the ability to sight read is not a necessity and new members are always welcome.
The Society is a mixed voice choir of around 60 singers, drawn from Didcot and surrounding towns and villages. It encourages participation in choral singing for all ages and abilities, including those who have never sung in choirs before and many very experienced singers.
The choir works closely with other local groups and orchestras, performing a wide range of music throughout the year and is committed to contributing to the musical and cultural life of the area. Our musical director is Jordan Theis, and our accompanist is Julian Littlewood.
The choir performs three concerts a year in and around Didcot, performing a wide variety of choral music. In recent years, the choir has performed several concerts outside Didcot.
Such concerts have included: an open-air concert of The Fairy Queen (Purcell) in Blewbury ; a performance of Haydn Creation in Dorchester Abbey; a concert of Verdi Requiem in both Southwark Cathedral and the Silk Hall, Radley College and Carl Orff’s Carmina Burana in St Helen’s Church, Abingdon.
The choir has also ventured further afield, forming international links and promoting the town across Europe. In 2008 (the choir’s 50th anniversary year) the choir performed three concerts in Paris and Picardie in Northern France. For the 2009 tour the choir took the name of Didcot to Flanders, with concerts in the landmark Bruges Church of Onze Lieve Vreuvekerk, and Sint Paul’s Church in Ghent.
For 2010, we were able to leave our passports at home as we toured the delights of the Peak District, with a highlight of performing in Chatsworth House. The Summer Tour 2011 took us to Dublin, where we toured various venues in and around Dublin, including St. Mary’s Pro-Cathedral.
2014 took us to Normandy. Here we performed on a market square in Honfleur, outside the Bayeux Tapestry and at the Cathedrale Notre-Dame de Bayeux. In 2017 we ventured up the motorway where we had the pleasure to perform in the 70th Edinburgh Fringe, The Church of Holy Rude in Stirling and Glasgow Cathedral.
The Society continues to support local community events, including the organisation of the Didcot Town Carol Concert, an event that brings together a variety of community groups in festive harmony. This annual event raises several hundred pounds for the Mayor’s charity, as well as bringing great joy and delight to the standing-room-only audience.
New members are always welcome – especially tenors – and there is no audition.