United Voices of Edmonton

England Tour, 2011 August

Fish and Chips with the United Voices of Edmonton

Experience a "taste" of jolly ol' England!

The United Voices singers have been doing lots of three things: rehearsing, leading extra services, and fundraising. There is less than two months before we go to England!

We thought we'd have a fun, light-hearted fundraiser before we go. So - join us - on Sunday, June 26 at Sir Winston's Fish and Chip shop on the south side (10505-51 Avenue) at 6 pm. Your evening will include 2 pieces of haddock and chips, coleslaw, coffee/tea or a pop, PLUS some fabulous entertainment - of Atlantic Canada and British Isles songs! This will be a sneak preview of some of the music we're doing at a concert in Alveston, England. The tickets for this event are $25 and seating is limited. Tickets will go on sale June 5 after church.

The Name

I thought our hymnbook was called “Voices United”. Why do I keep hearing about “United Voices”?

We thought a little play on words would be great fun when we named our newly formed choir! Most of us are United and we are uniting our voices! The choir is made up of people from Robertson-Wesley as well as Knox-Metropolitan United and the Willan Chorale. The latter two choirs are both under the direction of Warren Mack.

The Trip

The idea behind forming this choir was to go on a trip to England and do some services in a British Cathedral. So – we are doing just that! The majority of the choir will leave Edmonton on July 29, fly to London and catch a transfer to Bath where that weekend we will sing three services in the historic and gorgeous Bath Abbey.

Then after a few days “off” around Oxford and London, doing some sightseeing and trying to shake our jet lag, we will continue on to Gloucester. We will be the “choir in residence” at Gloucester Cathedral for one week, singing eight services in seven days! For Harry Potter fans, this is one of the locations where they filmed many of the scenes from the Harry Potter movies!

More to Come

In a future update we’ll tell you more about the music that we plan to do while in England. We’ll keep you up to date with what is going on with the tour plans through our many methods of communication!

Bath Abbey


Along with one morning communion (Eucharist) service, we will sing at seven evensong services. Evensong is a late-afternoon or early evening service that is led mostly by the priest (minister) and choir. It’s a lovely, approximately 45 minute, musical, and very historic service. The choir sings an introit, an Anglican-chant psalm, the Magnificat and Nunc Dimittis, and some prayer responses for each service. Come and soak up this richly historic, music-filled, contemplative service.

Before we leave at the end of 2011 July, we will be doing several “Evensong” services here in Edmonton at a variety of churches.

Sunday, May 15, 4 pm
Robertson-Wesley United Church
Music by Robin King and Jonathan Wild
Sunday, May 29, 7 pm
All Saints' Cathedral (10035-103 Street)
Music of Stephanie Martin, Drummond Wolff and Michael Capon
Sunday, June 5, 7 pm
Knox-Metropolitan Untied Church (8307-109 Street)
Music of Warren Mack, David Ouchterlony and Paul Halley
Gloucester Cathedral


United Voices of Edmonton England trip is rapidly approaching!

It's just under three months until the United Voices (R-W and Knox-Metropolitan United, and Willan Choral choirs) leave for England!

We are very excited, and are diligently preparing music for the services that we sing in Bath Abbey (July 30 & 31) and in Gloucester Cathedral (Aug. 8-14). We will also be singing a concert at a parish near Stratford, a fundraiser for them, as they need a lot of very expensive stonework done on their church!

There are 35 people going on the trip, 28 choristers, 2 directors, and 5 "hangers-on", aka choir groupies, aka significant others! From our arrival in London, we will have a quick journey to Bath where we will try to sing through jet-lag. We will get a few days off in Oxford so that we can get our time-clocks reset, and from Oxford we will do some sightseeing, and perform a concert. Next we are off to Gloucester, seeing the Elgar Museum on the way. We are attending eight concerts, events or services at the Three Choirs Festival in nearby Worcester. Part of the reason that we were invited to sing in Gloucester Cathedral for that week is that the Gloucester Cathedral choir is one of the three participating choirs (along with Worchester and Hereford) who hold the Three Choirs Festival annually. It is one of the oldest choral festivals in the world. In addition to the three choirs, they bring in some of the top musicians from all over Europe to present concerts and masterclasses.

In order to prepare for the trip, the choirs have been working hard, holding extra rehearsals, and fundraising. We still have a few students who need some support in the form of sponsorship or donated flight points in order for them to attend this fantastic tour. If you can help, please contact Tammy-Jo.

The majority of the services that we will sing in England are "evensong" services. These are ancient liturgies with much choral leadership and participation. Before we leave for England, we will be doing several evensong services here in Edmonton. They are: Sunday, May 15 at 4 pm at Robertson-Wesley; Sunday, May 29 at 7 pm at All Saints' Cathedral (10035-103 Street, Edmonton), and Sunday, June 5 at 7 pm at Knox-Metropolitan. These are beautiful services done in the Anglican style, so we'd love for you to attend!

While an exact date is still to be determined in late June, we will also be holding a "Fish and Chips" dinner at a local fish and chip restaurant in Edmonton. You will have a catered meal, lots of great entertainment, and a chance to experience a bit of "jolly old England" right here in Edmonton!