The 80th Anniversary of the St Paul’s Knightsbridge Festival Choir marks a milestone in the choir’s history on March 25, celebrating one family’s dedication to choral music and bringing live performances to St Paul’s Knightsbridge.
In the spring of 1937 Richard Lathan, a talented musician and organist at St Paul’s Knightsbridge, established the Festival Choir to perform Bach’s St John Passion in the church during lent.
Originally made up of 100 boys and 30 men, the choir was re-established after the war as a choral society of mixed voices with women singing the soprano and alto parts.
For decades Richard Latham developed the choir and expanded its repertoire with rehearsals accompanied by Sylvia his wife who was a fine pianist. Upon his father’s death in 1980 the baton was picked up by the next generation, also called Richard Lathan, who has continued to strive for excellence supported by his wife, an accomplished musician in her own right, who regularly plays the violin in the orchestra, and extended members his family including the next generation who regularly sing with the choir.
The Latham family have not only inspired generations of singers, long before the BBC’s The Choir made choral singing fashionable, they have introduced those that attend the concerts to music across the centuries including works composed in the last few years.
For their 80th anniversary concert, the choir returns to its roots and will perform the St John Passion on the March 25 when once again the choir and orchestra will be conducted by Richard Latham who simply said, “it is a privilege to give our performances in such a beautiful church”.
Tickets: £18 on the door, £15 through choir members
Location: St Paul’s Church, Wilton Place, Knightsbridge, London, SW1X 8SH
Time & Date: Saturday 25 March, 7:30pm
For more information visit www.spkfc.com