Mark joined The Bach Choir in 2005. ‘I was singing with another choir in Warwick for around 10 years until the rehearsal night changed and clashed with another weekly commitment. A friend had told me about the excellent musical director Janet Lincé at the Bach Choir and invited me to come along for a try-out which quickly led to an audition. The change of choir was quite refreshing and the musical programme seemed to suit my musical taste and experience.’
My love for choral music goes back to my childhood, and some of my earliest memories are of sitting alongside my father at the church organ in St Paul’s Weymouth, where from the age of 20 he was a keen organist and choirmaster. I learned to appreciate many different choral styles and listened to many choral performances before becoming a chorister and singing them for real!
I have always found the Bach Choir to be a welcoming and sociable group, with a repertoire that, during my time, has included most of the important works for mixed voices. I have enjoyed singing chorales and complete works from the classical –Brahms, Bach, Mozart and Haydn – to the contemporary – including Bob Chilcott, John Rutter, Jonathan Willcocks.
I would like to think that my voice is quite versatile and tuneful (!) and I like to have a good sing. Like many other choir members I find it quite therapeutic after a busy day. As a 2nd bass, you will usually find me in the back row of the choir and, after rehearsal, along with the other 2nd basses at the local pub – where we relax and review our choral performance over a pint!
‘‘Some of the concert works are outside my comfort zone at first, so I tend to view them as good for my personal development, but usually get to really like them by the time the concert comes round.’’
As a retired banker and more recently, interior decorator, Mark loves to get stuck into DIY projects at home, and for one or two friends and colleagues in the area. However, singing is still a very important part of Mark’s life and whilst singing with the Bach Choir, he has also contributed to the running of the choir through his activities in various roles on the committee over more than 12 years.