Past Events



First meeting on 14th April. First concert at St Mary’s Church, Callington on 17th November: programme included Gloria (Vivaldi), The King Shall Rejoice (Handel) and Jesu, Joy of Man’s Desiring (Bach).


Gilbert & Sullivan Evening. Gorsedd Concert at Callington Methodist Church on 1st September: programme included Zadok the Priest (Handel), Jesu, Joy of Man’s Desiring (Bach),  leaves in Autumn fade and fall (Gilbert & Sullivan), Ave Verum (Byrd) and Rejoice in the Lord Alway (Purcell).


Easter Concert with Vivaldi’s Gloria on 28th March at St Mary’s Church, Callington. First trip abroad (Guipavas, France). Performance at Guipavas Church on 12th April included Zadok the Priest (Handel), Herzlich thut mich verlangen (Bach), Sheep may safely graze (Bach), Christ lag in Todesbaden (Bach) and excerpts from Messiah (Handel).


Joint concert with Sene choir from Brittany on 17th May in Callington School Hall.  Concert at St. Ive Parish Church on 27th June.  Programme included Zadok the Priest (Handel), King of Glory (Bach), The Bell Anthem (Purcell), Christ lag in todesbanden (Bach), Requiem (Faure) and exerpts from Vivaldi’s Gloria.  Six Christmas concerts were given at venues around Callington.


5th March “Classic Cream” recording at the Methodist Chapel, Callington – 23rd April Concert at St Ive Church – 25th April Concert at L’Eglise de St Patern, Vannes, France – 26th April Concert at L’Eglise de Gourin, France – 30th April Choir party at Callington School – 13th September Concert at Stoke Climsland Church – 26th September Wedding at St Mary’s Church, Callington – 27th September BBC TV live broadcast from Looe – 21st November Concert with Liskeard Silver Band at Callington Comprehensive School – 4th December BBC Spotlight TV recording at St Mary’s Church, Callington – 10th December Concert at Menheniot Methodist Chapel 13th December Concert at Liskeard Methodist Church – 13th December BBC recording for Radio Cornwall at St Austell – 15th December Carols at the Coachmakers Arms, Callington – 17th December Concert at St Ive Methodist Church. 20th December Carol Service at St Ann’s Church, Gunnislake. 22nd December Concert at St Ann’s Church, Gunnislake – 23rd December BBC TV Spotlight broadcast – 25th December BBC Radio Cornwall broadcast – 28th December BBC Radio Cornwall broadcast.


Tour to Germany with concerts on 29th May at Thomaskirche (Hamburg-Bramfeld) and 1st June at Kirche Barsbuttel.  9th October Radio 2 Sunday Half Hour broadcast from St Anne’s Church, Gunnislake.


Trip to Denmark with concerts on board ship and at Hjorring and Bindslev.  Visit of Barsbuttel choir.


27th June – joint concert at Stoke Climsland Church with Bindslev Koret.  Programme includes Panis Angelicus (Franck), Insanae at vanae curae (Haydn), Celtic Benediction (Pelmear) and Sweet was the song the virgin sang (Williams).


Choir sang their first office at Lichfield Cathedral on April 11th.  Another was sung at Exeter Cathedral on July 14th.  For the latter, the order of service included Stanford canticles in B Flat and the Smith responses.


A year of cathedral singing!  Salisbury and Truro in April and Westminster Abbey on 31st August.  At Truro all the services for the day were sung (including Schubert in G, Franck’s Panis Angelicus and Byrd’s Responses) and at Westminster we sang the Choral Evensong (Stanford in C, Smith Responses)


10th Anniversary concert at Truro Cathedral on 24th April.  Programme includes Mozart’s Mass in C, I was Glad (Parry) and Cantique de Jean Racine (Faure).  Choral Evensong on August Bank Holiday Monday at Westminster Abbey.  Music for service was Byrd’s Responses, Stanford canticles in B Flat, Crown of Roses (Tchaikovsky) and Let All the World (Vaughan Williams).  Visit of Funbashi City Chorus (Japan) in October.


Visit of Nagano Children’s Choir (Japan) in March.  Trip to Northern Denmark (Bindslev and Hirtshals) in May.


Concert at Harrowbarrow Village Hall on May 11th.  Trip to Germany and visit to Callington by a choir from the USA.


Performance of Carmina Burana (Orff) with Plymouth Symphony Orchestra at the Guildhall, Plymouth.  Concert for Dobwall’s Methodist Church Chapel Anniversary on 16th May (programme included Wood’s “O Thou the Central Orb”, Howells’ “Like as the Hart” and Stainer’s “God So Loved the World”.  Trip to Empoli, Italy.  Joint concert at Exeter Cathedral with Pia Societa Chorale “S.Cecilia” (From Italy) on 26th August.  Hosts to choir from Germany.


Tour to Ireland October 25th to 29th October, singing at services at St Saviours Church, Avoca and Dublin Protestant Cathedral.  A joint concert was held with our hosts, The Avoca Singers.  More locally, concerts were held at All Saints Church, Millbrook on 11th November and at St Dominick’s Parish Church on 29th November.


Visit by Chorale Chanterelle, Guipavas, France.  Joint concert with them at Stoke Climsland Church on 11th April.  Programme includes Haydn’s Missa Sancti Nicolai, Handel’s Messiah and Mozart’s Laudate Dominum.


Last Night of the Proms concert at Tavistock Town Hall  with the Tavistock Town Band.  BBC broadcast on Sunday Half Hour – recorded at Tavistock Parish Church on 25th November and transmitted on 19th December.  Programme includes Parry’s Jerusalem, Stainer’s Come, thou long-expected Jesus and Ravenscroft’s Hark, the glad sound.


Tour to Denmark, with concerts in Bindsle and Tversted.  International Millenium Concert held at St Eustachius Parish Church, Tavistock, on 28th October.  The Callington Singers were joined by The Avoca Singers (Ireland), Chorale Chanterelle (France), Corale Santa Cecilia (Italy) and Kantorei Barsbuttel (Germany).  This concert featured the specially commissioned work ‘De Profundis’.


Tour to Italy, with concert in Empoli.  Matins at St George’s Chapel, Windsor..


Tour to France, visiting Guipavas and Vannes.  Singing at services at Bath Abbey and St Paul’s cathedral.  Taking part at a ‘Proms in the Park’ at Whiteford, Stoke Climsland.  Featured on BBC Spotlight.


Visit to St Pol de Leon Church, Penzance.  Concerts at Callington Methodist Church and St Dominick Parish Church.  Service at Exeter Cathedral.  Tour to France, singing at La Madeleine and Notre Dame in Paris and Reims Cathedral.


Tour to Germany, with concerts at Berlin Dom (Berlin), St Peter’s Dom (Schleswig) and Thomasskirche (Leipzig).  Four evensong services sung at St Paul’s Cathedral, London, 23rd to 26th August.  The Smith Responses were sung at all services.  The canticles were Stanford in B Flat, Stanford in G, Stanford in C and Stanford in A.  The anthems were Bach’s King of glory, King of peace, Mendelsohn’s He watching over Israel, Brucker’s Locus iste and Faure’s Cantique de Jean Racine.


Tour to Italy, singing in Rome (St Peter’s and San Pietro in Vincoli), Florence (Duomo) and Empoli (Duomo).  BBC broadcast on Sunday Half Hour from Abbotsbury Parish Church, Newton Abbot.  Christmas Concert in Tavistock Catholic Church with Charles Cross Band from Plymouth.


Worcester Cathedral.  May: tour to Paris and Switzerland.  Christmas Concert in Tavistock Catholic Church with Charles Cross Band from Plymouth.


March 31st Choir members wedding at St Dominick Parish Church; April 9th: Wells Cathedral, Somerset for lunchtime concert and choral evensong (Stanford in G Major, Smith Responses and Haydn’s Insanae et vanae curea); May: tour to Spain with concerts in Barcelona and Toldeo;  July 14th/15th: weekend services at Gloucester Cathedral;  September 30th: Harvest Festival at St Dominick Parish Church.


29th March International concert at St German’s Parish Church to celebrate The Callington Singers’ 25th anniversary with Chorale Chanterelle from France, Kantorei Barsbuttel from Germany and Bindslev Koret from Denmark. Spring tour to Austria, Slovenia & Italy – singing in Ljubliana Cathedral, Salzberg Cathedral, St Mark’s Basilica Venice & St Stephan’s Cathedral Vienna. August Christ Church Cathedral Oxford.


May, Spring tour to Menorca singing at The Church of Santa Maria de Mahon, Santa Margarita Anglican Church, Es Castell and Cuitadella Cathedral. June visit to Stratford upon Avon for joint concert with local choir Tarantara. Concert in July at West End Methodist Church, Callington as part of the Callington Festival. Charity “Come and Sing” Faure’s Requiem in September at Liskeard Parish Church.


May, Choral Workshop at Tavistock Parish Church singing Vivaldi’s Gloria and Handel’s Zadok the Priest followed by journey to Austria to sing in Klagenfurt and Graz Cathedrals. Summer Charity Concert in June at Launceston Parish Church jointly with Tarantara from Stratford upon Avon. Weekend “twinning” visit to Barsbuttel at the end of October and Carol Concerts and Services in Callington, Gunnislake and St Dominick in December.


April, weekend visit to Guipavas to celebrate the 20th Anniversary of Chorale Chanterelle.  May, Concert at Gunnislake Parish Church.  Late May/early June spring tour to Czech Republic and Poland singing in St Clement’s Church and St Nicholas Church, Malostranske Namesti in Prague and St Barbara’s Church in Krakow. Visit to Weilicka Salt Mine singing in St Kinga’s Chapel there.  July Summer Concert at St Ive Church and the retirement of Deputy conductor Jill Quilliam.  September Concert at Lamerton Church and the award of the Cornwhylen Cross at the Cornish Gorsedh. Carol Services in Lamerton and Gunnislake Churches during December.


The year started with Choral Evensong at Exeter Cathedral on Saturday 7th January followed by Sung Eucharist and Choral Evensong on the Sunday. In May we gave a concert at St Anne’s Church in Gunnislake before our traditional overseas spring tour in early June to sing in Vienna and Budapest. A further concert at St Anne’s in August was followed by Sunday Eucharist and Evensong at Truro Cathedral in early September. In December we gave Carol Concerts at the Victorian Christmas market in Callington and at St Ive Church, sang Carols outside Tesco in Callington and took part in a Carol Service at St Anne’s.


This was a very big year for the choir as it included the 30th Anniversary Concert on 26th October at Menheniot Church. The choir was on form and our visitors from Germany and France made an enjoyable contribution to the programme which included the world premier of Andrew Downes’ Jubilate. The party afterwards was an amazing success enjoyed by everyone; The venue was stunning and the food delicious. Only the weather let us (and our French visitors) down! The French Choir had an horrific journey back due to storms in the Bay of Biscay.

The foreign tour was a resounding success. Bratislava proved to be a wonderful city and our return to Budapest was undoubtedly a good choice. All our concerts were well received by large appreciative audiences and it was good to be invited back to all the venues.

In August our first performance of the year in Gunnislake was well received by the organisers of the Festival. Later in the same month we added Bristol to the impressive list of European cathedrals where we have performed. It was once again a pleasure to sing in St Dominick Church at the beginning of October for their Harvest Festival. We then barely had time to prepare our Christmas programme for the festive season of four performances.


On the weekend of the 15th-16th February the Callington Singers provided the music for services at Exeter Cathedral. The Cathedral Chapter was delighted by our presence and contribution to their services. Graham was very pleased with the standard of our singing in the different situations and most impressed with the soloists. The choir and accompanist coped admirably with the temporary electronic instrument.

On the 13th April the choir performed an Easter concert at Gunnislake Church in which excerpts from Schubert’s Mass in G and Stainer’s Crucifixion formed the programme. The concert was very well received.

On Sunday 3rd August The Callington Singers provided the music at Truro Cathedral for the Eucharist service and a special evensong in remembrance of the outbreak of the First World War, organised by the Cornwall Remembers Project. The evensong was attended by several dignitaries and the choir sang the Downes Jubilate for the second occasion in a liturgical setting.

On Friday the 7th November the choir gave a charity concert at Lamerton Church in honour of the centenery of the outbreak of hostilities on the Western Front. The concert was titled ‘For the Fallen’ and incorporated an exhibition from Devon Heritage Centre as part of the Tha Last Post Project and the Devon County Council ‘Devon Remembers’ initiative. In addition to the choral and organ music, several pieces of poetry were recited, including an original piece, ‘Poppies grow in Solace’ written by choir member Chris Parsons and recited by the author. The concert was very well attended and raised over £500 for SSAFA.

Christmas Carol concerts were given in the churches of Gunnislake and St. Ive. In late December several of the choir travelled to Guipavas in Brittany to join in concert with Chorale Chanterelle in celebration of the host choir’s 25th anniversary. The concert included a recital of The Christmas Oratorio by Sant Saens.


The first performance of 2016 was at St Lalluwy’s church in Menheniot where our ever increasing repertoire was added to by some solos beautifully sung by Dee, Ken and Tessa Hansford who joined us for the occasion. Linda, Brian and Duncan formed the trio in The Bell anthem and there were organ solos played by GW and Mark.

During the summer we made what is becoming our annual trip to Truro where we enchanted the morning congregation with our introit of Schubert’s Heilig (from the German Mass), Mozart’s mass in C and Britten’s Hymn to the virgin. Evensong included Noble in b minor and an outstanding performance of Te Lucis. It is always a delight to sing in the cathedral and I am pleased that we are returning there later this year

Yelverton Church is a delightful place to sing and the audience was most appreciative of our programme which included music by Charles Wood, Handel, Rossini, John Cornish, Britten, Mozart and Vaughan Williams. There were several vocal solos and a lovely performance of some Gershwin songs played by Mark. We will certainly return there in the near future.

At the beginning of December we gave a concert in St Mary’s Church in Callington. The first half consisted of several of our more flamboyant pieces including Riu Chiu with Ken singing solo and Lloyd-Webber’s Pie Jesu. The second half gave us a chance to air some of the carols which would again be used later in the month.

Later in December we were invited to Join Tavistock Rhythm and Brass and the Carousel in a Christmas Spectacular at Torpoint Church. The small audience was more than compensated by their large applause as we performed some seasonal music, including my own Sleep holy babe, this time accompanied by Gabrielle.

After two informal sessions at a dry but chilly Tesco and at a soaking Crocadon we gave our final performance of the year at Gunnislake church where it was pleasing to see that the new Rector was in attendance. The service contained a good selection of seasonal hymns, some lovely carols some of which were familiar to the congregation (and some were not so) and a selection of choruses from Bach’s Christmas Oratorio.


The first performance of the year was at Lamerton church where we premiered quite a few new works which we had been working on for several months. The theme of the concert was 2016 Anniversaries and included pieces by Charles Wood, Antonio de Cabezon, Samuel Wesley, William Benett, Franz Schubert, Walford Davies, Benjamin Britten and Hubert Parry. On the evening the choir and audience were also treated to solo items by local girl Emily Hill and our own Mark Smith.

The tour to Malta and Gozo was a great success. The choir surpassed themselves at each event. In Gozo the local priest plied the musicians with local wine and gave us a tour of the island at his own expense. He was most enthusiastic in persuading us to return again soon – an invitation which we will be happy to accept ere too long. The music chosen for Valetta reflected both our repertoire and ability very well and was received by a most enthusiastic audience.

The July concert at Stoke Climsland duplicated much of the programme which we had taken abroad. The church proved to be an ideal venue for a choir of our size and the priest in charge was most welcoming.

It was a great pleasure once again to provide the music at Truro Cathedral for their Sunday Worship. The congregation appreciated our performances very much and the Dean of the cathedral  was highly complementary about our singing – particularly of the psalms and responses, parts of the services which, he added, were so often the weakest part of a visiting choir’s service. As a result of our singing on that day we have been invited to give a lunchtime concert in the cathedral in October.

Our return to Stoke Climsland in December was great fun. The traditional carols were well supplemented by some solo items, choruses from Messiah and a piano solo by Debussy. The whole evening was well rounded off with wine and mince pies.

It was a joy to sing at Crocadon for their Christmas Market. Unfortunately this was the final occasion for us to perform  there as their function is changing this year. I am grateful to those members of the choir sang in Callington Town the same evening. I have asked the organisers to place us earlier in the day should we be asked to return in 2017.

The final performance of the year was the Lessons and Carols at Gunnislake. Two new pieces were premiered there and it was a delight to hear your own MD’s carol performed so beautifully.


The Come & Sing in April was enjoyed by many, participants and audience alike, and resulted in several folk joining us permanently.

The concert in Bere Ferrers was a fine occasion at which we were able to perform our new repertoire of a Salieri Mass together with some old favourites.

Our weekend at Exeter Cathedral was most rewarding. The Saturday concert and Sunday Eucharist were particularly fine. Congratulations to all concerned for this – especially to the member who drove for several hours to get there and to our accompanist who remained calm and collected even after his car broke down!

September saw us give a joint concert with, and at the invitation of, Torpoint Ladies Singers. We will invite them to our own stomping ground later in the year. Your MD had to rush off to France immediately afterwards to do a recce for next year’s French Tour but was back in good time for the lunchtime recital which we gave in Truro Cathedral at the end of the month.

The December concert in St Dominick Church saw us perform the Sage Bush Carol which we had commissioned. It was particularly gratifying not only to have the composer accompany us but also to see his look of sheer delight after the performance. The next day was equally busy when we gave our annual festival of lessons and carols at Gunnislake Church. The Rector’s emergency deputy was particularly impressive!

Carol singing in Tesco raised a pleasing sum for charity as did our return, after many years, to Cotehele.


The first performance of the year was Jill Long’s memorial concert. It was a privilege to perform some of her favourite pieces to her family and friends, and to raise money for her chosen charity.

In April we made our 23rd visit to Truro Cathedral where we were warmly welcomed and where Rutter, De Severac, Stanford and Wood all got an airing. In May we made an appearance at Callington’s Mayfest with two half hour slots of easy listening.

Also in May we went on tour to France. Chenonceau was a particularly beautiful setting and we performed some of our lighter repertoire to a large audience. This was repeated at Cheverny later the same day. Nantes Cathedral proved to be a glorious venue for our lunchtime performance there. Many warm friendships were made at St Sebastien and they will be visiting Callington. The tour finished with a joint concert with Chorale Chanterelle in Guipavas Church.

July 14 saw us perform at Tavistock Parish Church. The concert was very well received by a good audience and resulted in us being invited to sing there later in the year for their Patronal Festival.

In August we made our 2nd visit to St George’s Chapel Windsor – surely one of our most significant venues ever.  The music was performed beautifully and Mark’s organ playing was delightful.

The final events of the year were our annual Christmas performances in Cotehele and in Gunnislake.