THE CHOIR

 
Londinium, conducted with great style by Andrew Griffiths, has the twin merits of balance and clarity...
— Edward Clark, Musical Opinion
 

Londinium, directed by Andrew Griffiths, is one of London's most versatile chamber choirs, particularly noted for vibrant performances of a cappella repertoire. Founded in 2005, the choir has established a strong reputation for diverse, imaginative and eclectic programming across the centuries with an emphasis on unjustly neglected or rarely-performed works, particularly of the twentieth century. Its concerts have won consistent praise from critics; Robert Hugill described Londinium's performance of Benjamin Britten's virtuosic A.M.D.G. as 'a tour de force... presented with a confidence, firmness and vividness which was altogether admirable' (planethugill.com).

The name of the choir, the single word 'Londinium', reflects its strong connection with the City of London, where it was founded. Londinium’s regular concert venue was, until July 2018, in the City, at St Sepulchre-without-Newgate; it is delighted to have found a new home, for rehearsals and many of its concerts, at St John’s Waterloo.

singing in the rain! photo: Sheila Burnett

The choir is strongly committed to contemporary repertoire; it gave the first performances of Barnaby Martin’s I saw eternity, and Perpetual Light: Requiem for an Unscorched Earth, by Jessica Curry: 'a dark, tormented piece, punctuated by moments of brightness...that radiated hope, the emotional thread that tied the whole piece together. From start to finish, Londinium perfectly captured this delicate emotion...' (Kay Kempin, Bachtrack) and the UK première of Nico Muhly's Recordare Domine. It also features on the first recording of Antony Pitts' oratorio, Jerusalem-Yerushalayim, released by Hyperion. 'The two soloists brought an ethereal quality to a powerful, yet most poignant performance' (Cecilia McDowall, The Lord is Good).

Londinium has featured in the Classical Brit Awards at the Royal Albert Hall, performing with Bryn Terfel and Rolando Villazón. It provided singers for the Philharmonia Orchestra's performance of Prokofiev's Ivan the Terrible at the Royal Festival Hall, conducted by Vladimir Ashkenazy, and was the semi-chorus in a performance of Verdi's Requiem at Cadogan Hall. Other engagements have included recitals for the Art Fund, the Friends of the Georgian Society of Jamica, Special Olympics Great Britain, the British Library and the David Shepherd Wildlife Foundation, and the choir has sung in venues as diverse as the Natural History Museum, the Crypt Gallery at St Pancras Church, the British Library and Cliveden House. August 2016 saw Londinium's first overseas tour, to Colmar in Alsace, France, where it gave acclaimed performances of British a cappella choral music in a programme entitled 'Perspectives Anglaises'.

In March 2018 Londinium's debut album, 'The Gluepot Connection', a selection of choral music by twentieth-century British composers, was released on the SOMM label. It is a MusicWeb International Recording of the Year for 2018, one of only eight discs to receive two nominations. The recording has been praised in Gramophone (“impressive accomplishment and no mean flair”), American Record Guide and BBC Radio 3 Record Review; it has also received a 5-star review in Choir & Organ and 4-star reviews from BBC Music Magazine, The Daily Telegraph and The Birmingham Post. Find out about 'The Gluepot Connection'.

Londinium recording ‘the gluepot connection’
 

In July 2019 the choir appeared on BBC Radio 3’s ‘In Tune’, singing Debussy, Elgar and Purcell ahead of its concert ‘The Grand Tour’, which gained a 4-star review from The Arts Desk. Londinium’s next project is to take its ‘Time & Tide’ programme to the South Coast, where it will give concerts at St Leonards-on-Sea and Bexhill-on-Sea on 24th and 25th August.