Musicians for the Wedding Service at Westminster Abbey
Published 15 March 2011
Both Prince William and Miss Middleton have taken a great deal of interest and care in choosing the music for their Service
Two choirs, one orchestra and two fanfare teams will perform the music at the Wedding Service of Prince William and Miss Catherine Middleton at Westminster Abbey on April 29th. These are:
•The Choir of Westminster Abbey
•The Chapel Royal Choir
•The London Chamber Orchestra
•The Fanfare Team from the Central Band of the Royal Air Force
•The State Trumpeters of The Household Cavalry
The choirs will be under the direction of Mr James O’Donnell, Organist and Master of the Choristers at Westminster Abbey. The Choir of Westminster Abbey is made up of 20 boys, all of whom attend the Abbey’s dedicated residential Choir School, and 12 professional adult singers, known as Lay Vicars. In addition to singing the daily choral services in the Abbey throughout the year, it plays a central role in the many royal, state and national occasions which take place at the Abbey. The Abbey’s Sub Organist, Robert Quinney, will play the organ.
The Chapel Royal Choir consists of ten Children of the Chapel, boy choristers who hold scholarships at City of London School, and six Gentlemen-in-Ordinary, who are professional singers. The Chapel Royal Choir has existed since at least the Norman Conquest. The Organist, Choir Master and Composer at Her Majesty’s Chapel Royal is Dr. Andrew Gant. The Choir’s duties are to sing the weekly service in the Chapel Royal at St James’s Palace and to perform for the Sovereign on other occasions, including at the weddings of members of the Royal Family. The distinctive State uniforms worn by the Children date from the reign of Charles II.
The London Chamber Orchestra will be conducted by Mr Christopher Warren-Green, its Music Director and Principal Conductor. The orchestra will comprise 39 musicians located in the organ loft of the Abbey. The LCO is the longest established professional chamber orchestra in the UK, having been founded in 1921 by Anthony Bernard. HRH The Duchess of Cornwall is a patron of the orchestra. Mr Warren-Green has conducted numerous concerts for the Royal Family.
A Fanfare Team of seven musicians from the Central Band of the Royal Air Force will perform under the direction of Wing Commander Duncan Stubbs. The Central Band was established in 1920 and provides musical support to the Royal Air Force throughout the UK. In addition to their musical duties, Royal Air Force musicians also serve overseas in support of the broader Defence cause.
The State Trumpeters of The Household Cavalry comprises musicians from both The Band of The Life Guards and The Band of The Blues and Royals. The Fanfare Team of eight Trumpeters will be led by Trumpet Major Grant Sewell-Jones of The Band of The Blues and Royals. In addition to their musical duties, all Army Musicians can be called upon to act as individual augmentee soldiers in support of operations across the world.
Both Prince William and Miss Middleton have taken a great deal of interest and care in choosing the music for their Service, which will include a number of well-known hymns and choral works as well as some specially-commissioned pieces.
Following the Wedding Service at Westminster Abbey, Claire Jones, the Official Harpist to HRH The Prince of Wales will perform at a Reception hosted by Her Majesty the Queen at Buckingham Palace.
Further information on the music will be made available nearer the time of the wedding.