FORTY-ONE students from New Hall School in Chelmsford, Essex, had the experience of a lifetime this half-term on a choir tour to Venice.
The six-day tour saw the choristers singing at four beautiful venues in Venice and Verona. One highlight was singing Sunday Mass at St Mark's Basilica, in the heart of historic Venice. to a packed congregation. Under the direction of Andrew Fardell the choir performed varied works from Faure's Messe Basse and Wesley's "Thou Wilt Keep Him in Perfect Peace" to the more contemporary "All things Bright and Beautiful" by John Rutter and "A Little Jazz Mass" by Bob Chilcott.
The visit also included trips to the Doge's Palace, the Rialto Bridge. the Accademia art gallery and the island of Burano, which is famous for its lacemaking. Students also had a memorable trip down the Grand Canal at sunset.
Emily Crisp and Alex Carter, both Year 9 students, said: "It was brilliant! Venice was so beautiful and singing at St Mark's was truly amazing!"
New Hall School Choir has performed at St Peters Basilica in Rome and on BBC television. The choir will sing Evening Mass at Westminster Cathedral on Saturday, May 13.
Two members of the choir on the tour — Emma Nelmes and Emma Russell — have recently been accepted into the National Youth Choir of Great Britain.