This was another opportunity to learn about singing plainsong and reading from neumes in the context of the quiet service of Compline – An Order for Night Prayer. Led by Derek Harrison

DATE/VENUE: Sunday 8th March 2020; St Cuthbert’s, Rye Park, Hoddesdon (EN11 0PU)


Around 18 singers gathered in the church hall for the workshop at 3.00 and were joined by 2 more for the rehearsal and service. The first session looked at musical notation briefly but the notation of neumes in particular (using the Compline music for practice). That include listening to the opening of Duruflé’s Requiem noticing how exactly he follows the plainsong for the opening; likewise the Toccata on Ave Maris Stella by Flor Peeters. We then moved into the church to rehearse all of the music the service including the anthem which was Tallis’ Canon – 4 verses in variously 1, 4 and 8 parts. A small congregation joined us for the service at 6.00.

Between the rehearsal and service, a typically excellent tea (plus sandwiches and cakes) was provided for all those taking part.

Music for the event: the Compline booklet was provided (from the EHCCA library). It is published by the RSCM for The Plainsong and Medieval Music Society.