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Church music

When people who know me find out that I go to church on Sundays and actually sing in the choir at the family Mass, their jaws normally hit the deck. \”You do?\” they say, and then shift away slightly in case I start telling them about Jesus or something. Even though I\’ve never ever shown any symptoms of holiness before and pretty certainly never will.
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Well, one reason is that I like to sing – not karaoke, not on some pathetic X-factor egotronic stage, but in unison with other people. I think it\’s a tragedy that our world really only makes room for communal singing in rugby clubs and a very few pubs. Not even schools do it any more, with multi-culturalism killing stone-dead a rousing couple of verses of \”Heehoowoodvalyantbee\” in the morning. It always used to cheer me up, even in the depths of adolescence.
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There are downsides to singing in church – one of them is the randomness of church organists. Some of them are fantastic. Some wear important blue robes and have no notion of how to play for singers, often panicking halfway through the hymn and galloping for the end at ever-increasing speed. Unfortunately we\’ve got one of those which is why I never normally go to the Mass at which she plays.
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But today, the Galloping Organist was turning the pages for a young Polish musician playing for a wonderful youth choir – the Male Voice Choir of the Frederick Chopin University of Warsaw. They were in Cornwall for the Male Voice Choir festival here and kindly came to sing for us at Mass. The lads done great, they sang magnificently, in Latin and Polish, finishing off with a rousing Zadok the Priest and then humming to the congregation\’s Thine Be the Glory.
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And it was glorious.

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