EX CATHEDRA | Ex Cathedra wish everyone a Merry Christmas in a stylish concert tour - 4.5* review

“One thing is unquestionable: Ex Cathedra know how to present a well balanced and entirely enjoyable Christmas event that appeals on all fronts. The choice of carols represents old and new, well known and unusual; the readings that break up the choral sets are just as varied, from passages of scripture to poetry and prose by Henry VIII, Francis Quarles, Tim Minchin and Jeanette Winterson; there are processions and movement, with items sung from all around the building; there are candles, drums, and bells, organ music and even, in one of the Ešenvalds pieces, the sounds of a glass harmonica played by members of the choir. The whole – under the masterly yet unostentatious direction of their conductor Jeffrey Skidmore – is slickly worked together into two seamless halves that leave the listener feeling thoroughly Yule-ready.”

Read the full review here, with mentions to Will Todd, Oliver Tarney, Alec Roth, Eriks Ešenvalds – “all excellent, the intonation spot on” – James MacMillan’s And lo, the angel of the Lord “bore witness to the exceptional qualities of both composer and performers … with thrilling effect”, Martin Bates’ Three Songs for Christmas “presented with élan and a sure understanding of style, as was (with extra camp sprinkles) Jim Clulee’s arrangement of Adam’s Minuit Chrétiens (‘O Holy Night’)”, and Liz Dilnot Johnson’s A wild midwinter carol “a snappy (but occasionally quiet), folksy energy”.