It’s going to be a very busy week for Finchley Chamber Choir. Midweek, the BBC is broadcasting a recording of the singers’ 2011 performance of George Holloway’s Meltwater on Radio 3. On Saturday evening, March 3, they are putting on a concert of English choral classics at Trinity Church in North Finchley. And then on Sunday, it’s back to the BBC for a second appearance on Radio 3, on Aled Jones’s programme The Choir as part of the Voices Now Festival 2012.
The festival takes place at The Roundhouse in Camden, and aims to showcase some of the UK’s best choirs. It is held in association with the BBC Singers and Making Music, the UK’s number one organisation for voluntary music.
Choirs from all over the UK, with styles ranging from world and beat-boxing to classical, will be performing throughout the day. The festival will culminate in three choirs, one of which is Finchley, joining forces for the premiere performance of Orlando Gough’s Making Music Overture, which was specially commissioned by Making Music as part of the London 2012 Cultural Olympiad, to be broadcast live on The Choir.
At 12.30pm, Finchley Chamber Choir will perform excerpts of the English choral classics - Britten, Bax, Vaughan Williams and Howells -and will then feature in The Choir, broadcast live from 5.15-6.30pm.
As well as the Making Music Overture finale, the programme will feature the BBC Singers, the Roundhouse Choir and five other groups, and Finchley Chamber Choir is lucky enough to have been given a solo slot. "Somebody must have heard us and liked us!" laughs conductor David Lardi, who also conducts the choir’s sister orchestra, Finchley Chamber Orchestra.
"It’s the Gareth Malone syndrome," he says of singing’s huge popularity at the moment, "making people aware that choir singing isn’t some exclusive, elitist thing, but something that everybody can do. There’s such a range of choirs, it’s really good - groups working to a really high standard and then complete amateurs. It’s for everybody."
Finchley Chamber Choir will be performing English Choral Classics at Trinity Church, Nether Street, North Finchley on Saturday, March 3 at 7.30pm. Details: www.fcchoir.co.uk. Listen out for the choir on Radio 3’s The Choir on Sunday, March 4 from 5pm.