Russian concert in aid of Ukraine

Saturday  5 March 2022

Next Saturday’s performance of Rachmaninov’s All Night Vigil in St Mark’s Church, Broomhill, will be dedicated to the people of Ukraine. The Chorus released the following statement:

“In common with people from around the globe, Sheffield Philharmonic Chorus has been shocked by the news coming out of Ukraine. The hostile invasion of a nation by a neighbouring country has rightly been condemned by people of all nationalities all around the world.  The Chorus would like to join those voices in condemning the Russian invasion.  We also feel it is important to emphasise that none of these terrible events is the fault of the Russian people, nor of the many Russian artists who have bravely criticised the actions of their government.  And equally, none of it is the fault of Rachmaninov or Tchaikovsky, whose beautiful music we present on 12 March. The international language of music, so important to the identity of Russia and Ukraine, can perhaps speak more powerfully to us than words.  It’s in this spirit that we offer this concert as a symbol of our solidarity and friendship with the Ukrainian people. There will be a retiring collection for the Red Cross Disasters Emergency Committee Ukraine Appeal.”

The Chorus started working on Rachmaninov’s haunting All Night Vigil during the lock-down, rehearsing online from their own homes following the onset of the coronavirus pandemic, for a performance that was scheduled to take place last year but which had to be postponed. The Chorus had already decided to dedicate the performance on 12 March to the memory of Margaret Staniforth, a much-missed second soprano who had been a member for many years until her death in 2019. Her widower Kim will attend the concert as an honoured guest, and is pleased that the concert will also be offered in friendship with the Ukrainian people.

The programme will begin with beautiful but rarely-heard songs by Rachmaninov and Tchaikovsky, sung by Plymouth-born mezzo-soprano Charlette Badham accompanied by Chorus pianist Rachel Fright, with the All Night Vigil after a short interval.

Tickets cost £15, under-16s FREE, and are available online, from Chorus members or at the door on the night