Messiah from Scratch® 2023

View from the Rausing Circle of Messiah from Scratch 2023
(photo: Anna Gain)

Messiah from Scratch, November 2023


Messiah from Scratch® 2023 (Royal Albert Hall, 12 November) proved to be another unqualified success as we approach the 50th anniversary of this unique occasion.

 ‘Another triumphant night at the RAH – numbers well up, great and enthusiastic audience and much of the singing better than ever. There’s no doubt in my mind that the quality of choral singing improves year on year.’

So wrote a delighted Brian Kay, Principal Conductor of The Really Big Chorus, in the days following the concert. The occasion is always a joy, and it is particularly pleasing to  see numbers gradually approaching pre-pandemic levels.

Our team of soloists comprised Hilary Cronin (soprano), Tom Lilburn (counter-tenor), James Micklethwaite (tenor) and Johannes Moore (baritone). The English Festival Orchestra was led by Alison Kelly, and Joe Atkins (trumpet) gave us a fine duet with Jo Moore in ‘The trumpet shall sound’.  Jane Watts was in control of the massive ‘Father’ Willis organ, while Silas Wollston underpinned the whole performance from the harpsichord. 

As is usual at Messiah from Scratch®, programmes were sold in aid of the British Heart Foundation. The sum raised was £3,740 – representing a considerable increase on 2022. If you didn’t manage to buy a programme, and would nevertheless like to help the BHF, contact them here:

Feedback from our singers:

‘I wanted to say how really good the soloists were last night. The tenor was unfussy and really good; the counter tenor was lovely. The soprano was superb (such phrasing and such a range); and the baritone was powerful. Great evening; thank you.’ (William W.)
‘Very many thanks to you and the team for a joyous celebration of the Messiah on Sunday. Three generations of our family love this event; we also know that without the hard work done by you it would not happen! God bless you all.’ (Liz J.)
‘The whole experience was uplifting and exhilarating. It was wonderful to take part – congratulations on producing such a successful event.’ (Janet K./Rob S.)
‘Messiah from Scratch® 2023 was absolutely MAGICAL. The soloists were fabulous and we sang our hearts out next to very friendly and appreciative audience members from Spain!’ (Di P.B.)

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