Choirs sing again for Le Tour

Choirs singing with the Albion chorsl group at the Millennium Gallery in Sheffield in March to launch the Tour de France Grand Depart arts festival
Choirs singing with the Albion chorsl group at the Millennium Gallery in Sheffield in March to launch the Tour de France Grand Depart arts festival
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A special musical celebration of the Tour de France by a Sheffield choral group is now available as a recording.

Back in March, choral group Albion helped to launch the Yorkshire Festival 2014 – the first arts festival ever to precede the Grand Départ in its 111-year history – with a gala concert at Sheffield’s Millennium Gallery.

And now, as the arrival of the Tour de France draws closer and the festival comes to a climax, they are sharing a recording of the occasion with the world.

The concert featured a massed choir of more than 80 singers, all members of choirs from across the city and beyond. It highlighted the importance of singing within Yorkshire’s cultural life and showcased the many and varied voices that contribute to it.

With the Grand Départ focusing the international spotlight very firmly on this region, the hour-long performance featured 15 traditional songs from Britain and Ireland including Scarborough Fair and Jerusalem.

They were performed in new arrangements for choir and piano created by Albion’s artistic director, Fraser Wilson.

Yorkshire-based sound engineer Shaun Trotter masterminded the technical aspects. His job was complicated by having to fit the singers around the audience on all four sides of the venue.

Shaun devised an ingenious layout that ensured the effective capture and playback of the many voices.

It made a huge contribution to an event that was received very enthusiastically by both singers and audience.

Albion have launched the newly-mastered recording of the occasion online.

Fraser Wilson said: “The concert in March was a really spectacular way to kick off the festival and we were delighted with how it came together so successfully.

“We had a sell-out audience at the Millennium Gallery but there will be many more people out there who love this music and will want to have a listen to what we created.”

The record will be available up until race day. It can be downloadable free of charge, in a variety of formats, from www.albionchoir.org.uk.

Nearly 50 events have been selected to be officially part of Yorkshire Festival 2014 whichruns until July 6 and will also include hundreds of fringe events. Details on www.yorkshirefestival.co.uk.