About the choir

CHILTERN CHAMBER CHOIR

Chiltern Chamber Choir was founded by its director Adrian Davis in 1976, and draws its singers from Berkhamsted and the surrounding towns and villages. They share a passion for singing and perform at least three main concerts each year in St Peter’s Church, mostly with orchestra or organ accompaniment. Though they have outgrown their original chamber choir size, their standard is enviably high and they enjoy a fine reputation both locally amongst their numerous supporters and in many places outside Britain as well.
The Choir’s impressive repertoire ranges from music of the 12th century to contemporary works, often including works written specifically for the choir by Adrian Davis.
Since 1996, the Choir has undertaken many concert tours abroad, sometimes on tour alone and sometimes in collaboration with other choirs, such as the Madrid Bach Society Choir and the world famous Leipzig GewandhausChor. They have performed for Spanish television and have a special relationship with members of a Spanish choir with whom they have sung on various occasions. They have sung in Italy, in Germany and in Spain, and recently most frequently in France. In 2016 the tour was, for the third year running, to the Languedoc Roussillon area of France, where the choir opened the new music festival of the Compagnons de Maguelone in their wonderful cathedral. The success of their performance led to an invitation to give a performance of Handel’s Messiah as part of the Compagnons’ new programme of major concerts; this took place in October 2017.

OUR ORGANIST/ACCOMPANIST

Jonathan Lee studied at the Junior Royal Academy of Music, in Stellenbosch (South Africa), and at Cambridge University. Whilst at Cambridge he read for a degree in music, was an organ scholar at Sidney Sussex College, and studied the organ with both Nicholas Kynaston and John Wellingham. Prior to Cambridge, he was assistant organist at the Diocesan College in Cape Town. Jonathan has been organist at Berkhamsted Parish Church since Advent 2002, and in 2016 year he accompanied the church choir in a private concert for HM The Queen a few weeks after her 90th birthday. Accompanying and continuo work takes him all around Europe including work with the Gewandhauschor and the Bach Choir of Madrid (on Spanish television), both with the Chiltern Chamber Choir, as well as work much closer to home; he regularly accompanies a wide variety of choirs, singers and instrumentalists. Jonathan is staff accompanist on the NLMS music course, and in 2017 he directed the RSCM National Course in South Africa. He has been musical director of Berkhamsted’s Castle Choir since its launch in 2013.

Jonathan was for many years a music editor working for ABRSM, and has been responsible for several sets of the ubiquitous ABRSM piano exam anthologies. He also is active as a classical record producer, recently making records for Amici Voices, St Marylebone Parish Church Choir, the London Gay Men’s Chorus, Peterborough Cathedral Choir and the Beauregard Youth Choir, as well as making numerous sets of syllabus recordings for ABRSM. Jonathan is a peripatetic piano teacher at Berkhamsted School, where he is also school organist.

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