The Bard and Scotland in song

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The Hepton Singers will give two summer concerts on the themes of Shakespeare and Scotland this month.

The Hebden Bridge-based choir will perform at Christ Church, Barkisland, on Saturday, July 4 at 7.30pm and Heptonstall Parish Church on Saturday, July 11 at 8pm. The first concert will be in aid of CROWS - Community Rights of Way Service - a voluntary organisation which supports the work of Calderdale Countryside Service.

The thrilling programme of a cappella choral music, called ‘Noises, sounds and sweet airs’, will include pieces based on the themes of Shakespeare and Scotland with a range of exciting and atmospheric settings by Vaughan Williams, Swiss composer Frank Martin, Finnish Jaako Mäntyjärvi and American Matthew Harris. 

In 2000 the Hepton Singers commissioned the composer Paul Robinson with funds from Yorkshire Arts to compose As the Very Rocks Themselves, set to the lyrics of a poem by then Hebden Bridge-based poet Donald Atkinson. The text charts a tragic event in December 1998 when four young men from the Hebridean island of Iona were lost at sea in a small boat on their way back from a dance at Bunessan on Mull. 

The choir is delighted to be re-visiting the piece after a 10-year gap. Conductor Alison West says: “The choir has enjoyed rehearsing this programme, and we are looking forward to performing some wonderful and very varied repertoire.”

Tickets are £9/£6/£1 on the door or from