MUSIC-LOVING ANAESTHETIST’S LEGACY WILL HELP FUND BRISTOL PREMIERE OF MAJOR NEW CHORAL WORK

 

The cost of staging the world premiere of a major new choral work in Bristol has been supported with a legacy in the will of retired consultant anaesthetist Peter Wentworth Thompson who died in Bristol in 2015 aged 90.Dr Peter Wentworth Thompson
 
Dr Thompson, who was a regular worshipper at All Saints Church in the Clifton area of the city, loved the concerts and choral music at the Pembroke Road church.
 
‘For that reason, and with the approval of his family, we feel it is right to use Peter’s gift to help fund our Community Choral Concert on March 8,’ said the vicar Fr Charles Sutton. ‘This will be the first in a year-long programme of festival events celebrating the 150th anniversary of the consecration of the original Victorian church on this site.’
 
The size of the legacy has not been disclosed.
 
A highlight of the concert will be a performance by more than 150 voices of The River of Life, a newly-commissioned cantata inspired by the full height window of that title which is a feature of the baptistery of All Saints Church, rebuilt following devastation during the Blitz in 1940.
 
The words of the cantata, written by local Anglican priest Julie Nicholson, have been set to music by John Marsh, director of music at Bristol’s Lord Mayor’s Chapel.
 
  • Admission to the concert on March 8 at 7pm is free but the expected demand for seats means that tickets must be obtained in advance. Tickets will be available from February 1 at the Parish Office at All Saints Church, Pembroke Road, Bristol BS8 3ED, open from Tuesday to Friday from 9am to 2pm. Alternatively call 0117 9741355 or email officeallsaintscliftonbristol@gmail.com 
  • Follow All Saints Clifton on twitter @ASCBristol, using the hashtag #150ASC, on Facebook at www.facebook.com/AllSaintsClifton/ or visit the website https://allsaintsclifton.org/


BACKGROUNDER
DR PETER WENTWORTH THOMPSON
The late Dr Peter Wentworth Thompson, born in London in 1925, was educated at Kings School in Ely, Gonville and Caius College Cambridge and St George's Hospital in London. From 1957 he spent most of his working life as a consultant anaesthetist in Cardiff where his work passions were enabling pain-free medical treatment, improving safety standards and the work and values of the NHS itself.

Peter’s dedication to this work was recognised by a variety of honours and awards.  They included an MBE in 1988, awarded for his services to improving standards in anaesthesia and an award from BSI (the British Standards Institution) in 1992 for his distinguished service to the development of British, European and International standards of excellence.
 

 

The River of Life

 
WORLD PREMIERE OF A NEW CHORAL WORK WILL KICK-OFF A YEAR OF FESTIVAL EVENTS AT BRISTOL CHURCH OF ALL SAINTS CLIFTON
 
The world premiere of a major new choral work written in Bristol will be the first in a year-long programme of festival events celebrating the 150th anniversary of the consecration of the original Victorian church of All Saints in the Clifton area of the city.  The church commissioned the new cantata – The River of Life – with words by Julie Nicholson, a writer, public speaker and Anglican priest, and music composed by John Marsh, director of music at Bristol’s Lord Mayor’s Chapel.

Tipped to be the highlight of a Community Choral Concert on March 8, The River of Life was inspired by the full height window of that title designed by John Piper – the English painter, printmaker and designer of stained-glass windows - which is a feature of the baptistery of All Saints Church, rebuilt following devastation during the Blitz in 1940. 

The concert on March 8 will be performed by more than 150 voices drawn from All Saints Church Choir and members of other local choirs as well as singers from Clifton College Senior School and Preparatory School, the Bristol Cathedral Consort and the St John’s Junior School choral speaking group. (Choral speaking is defined as a group of people narrating a poem or a dramatic piece.)
 March 8th poster 1
Included in the concert programme will be Benjamin Britten’s cantata St Nicolas which relates stories of the life of the saint. He is possibly the most popular of mediaeval saints and patron of children, merchants and sailors. The key solo role will be taken by local tenor John Bacon.
 
‘Both these works are tailor-made for All Saints, using a gallery choir as well as other aspects of the building, including its fine organ,’ explains the church’s director of music, John Davenport. He reports that both works contain roles for the audience.

Admission to the concert on March 8 at 7pm is free but the expected demand for seats means that tickets must be obtained in advance from the Parish Office at All Saints Church, Pembroke Road, Bristol BS8 3ED, open from Tuesday to Friday from 9am to 2pm or call 0117 974 1355. Tickets will be available from February 1.
 
At the end of the concert a retiring collection will help to defray expenses.

BACKGROUNDERS:
 Julie Nicholson and John Marsh
Julie Nicholson is a writer, public speaker and Anglican priest well known in Bristol in her role as theatre arts director in the diocese.
 
John Marsh has been active in many areas of Bristol’s musical life, including teaching at Clifton College and as director of music of St Mary Redcliffe Church. Currently he is director of music at the Lord Mayor’s Chapel. His wide range of compositions include works for choirs and instrumental groups.
 
All Saints Church
The Victorian church of All Saints Clifton in Pembroke Road, consecrated 150 years ago on June 8, 1868, was destroyed by German fire-bombs during the night of December 2, 1940. Subsequently services were held for many years in the adjacent church hall in Alma Vale Road. It was more than a quarter of a century before the church was rebuilt. The first service in the new building was on July 1, 1967.