Elijah, July 2022

“Our choristers came away full of enthusiasm and inspiration, and I believe the benefits in terms of confidence will have a lasting impact not only on the choristers who came but on their peers who will benefit from their leadership. – Music Director

Friday 22 July – Tuesday 26 July 2022
Oundle School, Northamptonshire
Ely Cathedral, Cambridgeshire

In July 2022, Gabrieli Roar introduced teenagers from youth and state school choirs to Mendelssohn’s Elijah – one the great masterpieces of the choral repertoire and a work which is largely beyond the remit of most youth choirs. The five-day immersive residential course culminated in a performance in Ely Cathedral alongside the professional musicians of Gabrieli.

More than 160 young singers from 12 partner choirs came together at Oundle School. Each day they participated in vocal warm ups, sectionals and collective choir rehearsals with some of the best vocal coaches in the country and Gabrieli’s Artistic Director, Paul McCreesh. On the fourth day, participants were joined by the orchestral players of Gabrieli to engage in full rehearsals in advance of the concert on July 26th.

The performance brought participants into contact with world class instrumentalists and internationally acclaimed soloists, placing them at the heart of a professional concert, surrounded by the renowned energy of Gabrieli’s performances. Within the programme, our younger singers were able to learn by example and instinct, picking up the skills of our professional musicians through side-by-side skill building, educational involvement and osmosis.

“The project gave young singers an experience of the very highest quality coaching and performance. As an instrumentalist, working with this choir felt like working with excellent professionals, and it brought out the best from everyone” – Gabrieli Musician



This Roar residential course included:

  • 157 young singers between the ages of 9 to 18, from 14 youth and school choirs
  • For the first time, we welcomed 12 singers participating as individuals (not coming with a full choir)
  • 25 support staff from the participating choirs attended the course alongside their young singers, in addition to 10 Gabrieli pastoral staff to ensure the wellbeing and enjoyment of participants and choirs
  • 2 Chorus Directors and a further 6 Vocal Leaders guided sectional rehearsals and provdied additional musical instruction to Gabrieli’s Artistic Director, Paul McCreesh
  • A total of 70 professional musicians from Gabrieli’s Consort & Players, including 20 singers who stood alongside participants, and an orchestra of 50
  • 4 world-class soloists, including soprano Francesca Chiejina, alto Helen Charlston, tenor Andrew Staples and Bass Morgan Pearse
  • 438 live audience members in Ely Cathedral, representing 90% audience and ticket capacity
  • A total of 26 hours of rehearsals over 5 days (an average of just over 5 hours of rehearsal per course day)

“The atmosphere and the professionalism of the entire singing experience was phenomenal. Me and my young brother have gained a lot throughout the whole journey. Thank you Gabrieli! Will participate again next year and can’t wait” – Participant