Rachmaninov - Piano Concerto No 2 - Vocalise - The Bells. Poulenc - Gloria

Saturday, 10 March 2012 - 7:30pm


In Association with Bluthner logo 

Saturday 10 March 2012
Southampton Guildhall, 7.30pm

Southampton Philharmonic Choir and Southampton University Philharmonic Choir
New London Sinfonia

David Gibson (conductor)

Piano Concerto No 2, soloist Yuki Negishi
Vocalise, soloist Erica Eloff (soprano)
The Bells (in English), soloists Erica Eloff (soprano); Greg Tassell (tenor); John Lofthouse (baritone)

Poulenc  Gloria, soloist Erica Eloff


While Rachmaninov’s rarely performed choral symphony The Bells, is the main choral work in this concert, the main attraction must surely be his renowned Piano Concerto No 2 in C minor, which will be performed by international pianist, Yuki Negishi, and the New London Sinfonia, the only professional orchestra visiting Southampton Guildhall this season.  

The Bells was composed for soprano, tenor and baritone, with choir and a large, colourful orchestra. The original Russian text was freely adapted from Edgar Allan Poe’s poem of the same name. We will sing an English translation. Each of the four movements uses a different type of bell to portray a stage of human life – silver sleigh bells for birth and youth, golden wedding bells, bronze bells of warning, and the iron death bell.  Followers of Southampton Philharmonic Choir will recognise the name of the soprano soloist, Erica Eloff, winner of the 2008 Handel Prize, and one of our favourite soloists.  Erica will also be performing Rachmaninov's Vocalise, a wordless song for soprano and orchestra, with a beautiful, haunting melody, and she is especially looking forward to the chance to sing this Rachmaninov treat.

The other choral work, Poulenc’s joyous setting of the Gloria, is one of the finest religious works of the 20th century.


Altogether this is - according to the Choir's Musical Director, David Gibson - "the scrummiest programme I can think of!" 


The Choir wishes to thank the Rachmaninoff Society for its help with programme notes for this concert.  For information about the Society, visit their website.  


Our last concert at the Guildhall in December sold out, so early booking is advised.

Booking fees apply on phone orders from the Guildhall box office and orders made via the Guildhall web site. However there are ways to avoid having to pay these fees, namely:

  • Buy your tickets from a choir member.
  • Buy your tickets directly from the Guildhall Box Office, in person. You can pay by cash, credit or debit card but cheques are not accepted. Tickets may also be bought on the door on the night of the concert, subject to availability.
  • Phone the Guildhall Box Office and ask to reserve your seats. You will be given a booking reference and then you have 5 working days to send payment (cheques only!) Send a SAE (size A6 at least) to avoid the £1.50 postal charge.


Ticket prices: £9, £15, £17 & £20


  • Over 60s - £1 discount.
  • “Kids for a Quid” scheme for children aged 12 and under.
  • Students, older children, job seekers and disabled - £6, £7.50, £8.50 & £10
  • (Carers accompanying wheelchair users - free).
  • Group Concession - buy 10, get 11th ticket free.


Box Office: Civic Centre NorthGuild, Southampton, SO14 7LP

Telephone: 023 8063 2601

Group concessions: 023 8083 3612


Book online

Painting: Apollinary Vasnetsov, 1903. Ivan Veliki Square in the Moscow Kremlin in the 17th Century


Southampton Philharmonic Choir - making music live in Southampton since 1860