Devotional music at its finest will mark Delia Meehan’s 20th year as musical director of Chipperfield Choral Society.

The 19th Century French composer Charles Gounod was fascinated by religious music and his Messe Solennelle (the St Cecilia Mass) reflects the spiritual passion of a man who once contemplated becoming a priest. It was first performed as a mass for the church of Saint Eustache in Paris on Saint Cecilia’s Day, 1855.

The mass, which is dedicated to St Cecilia, the patron saint of music, quickly became one of Gounod’s popular works with its tuneful melodies, colourful harmonies and sometimes dramatic interpretation of the texts.

“There are moments of great simplicity, grandeur and serenity,“ says Delia. “The Gounod St Cecilia Mass is not very frequently performed so we are delighted to offer our audience the opportunity to share the beauty of this relatively little known, but inspiring music.“

The programme for the evening also features Mendelssohn’s much loved Hymn of Praise and the soloists are Mary Bevan (soprano), Rosemary Clifford (mezzo soprano), Tom Edward Robson (tenor) and Charles Rice (bass).

The concert takes place at St John’s Church, Station Road, Boxmoor on Saturday, March 10 at 7.45pm. Details: 01923 400520 or 01923 263939.