Archive

Brighton Festival Chorus has been performing since we were founded in 1968.

See a complete history of all of our concerts and recording sessions.

See all the conductors we have worked with.

See all the orchestras we have worked with.

See all the soloists we have worked with.

See all the venues where we have performed.

Please note that these documents are in 'pdf' format. You will need Adobe Acrobat or similar in order to read them.
 


 

Reunion of Founder Members

On 22 February 1968 a group of singers congregated upstairs in the Gas Showroom in Church Street in Brighton, met a Hungarian Chorus Master called Laszlo Heltay, sang through Mozart’s Kyrie in D minor - and thus Brighton Festival Chorus was born!

The old Gas Showroom is now Côte Brasserie, and on 22 February 2018 a group of about 45 founder members and other early members gathered together in that very room to celebrate 50 years of the BFC, to reminisce, meet old friends and swap anecdotes. In the intervening years quite a few original members have died, and we have lost touch with many others, but a good representative group of people did answer the invitation. Compared with the photos of the youthful choir we used to be, everyone present had, unsurprisingly, aged. However, listening to the conversations, it was obvious that the enthusiasm for music had not dimmed, and the memories were still bright. As Laszlo Heltay used to say - VE GO ON!

You can see a video of the gathering here.


 

Message From our Founder

2018 was the fiftieth anniversary of the founding of Brighton Festival Chorus by Laszlo Heltay, who was our Music Director for nearly thirty years. Laszlo is now retired and living back in Hungary, the country of his birth, but he sent us a goodwill message.

I am immensely proud of Brighton Festival Chorus and all that we achieved together. Their distinctive sound has been greatly admired by the many conductors who have worked with the Chorus from the beginning. I wish them every success for the next fifty years!

Laszlo Heltay, Founding Music Director


 

Founders

BFC Honours 50 Years' Service

In May 2018 BFC honoured two members who sang in its inaugural concert 50 years ago and who are still singing with the Chorus.

Gill Evans and Marilyn Linehan were presented with commemorative certificates and flowers at the conductor's piano rehearsal for William Walton’s Belshazzar’s Feast, which we performed with the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra at the Brighton Dome in May 2018. This was the work with which the Chorus made its debut 50 years ago, also with the RPO in the Brighton Festival, but with composer William Walton conducting.

 


 

Britten War Requiem - Historic Performance

Back in 1988, BFC took part in a historic performance of the Britten War Requiem in the city of Diksmuide in Flanders, Belgium. By the end of the World War 1, Diksmuide had been reduced to rubble. It was rebuiilt during the 1920s.

The concert, conducted by our founding Music Director, Laszlo Heltay, was in the main church in the city, on 11th November 1988 - exactly 70 years since the end of World War 1. It was broadcast live on Belgian television, and you can see a recording of it here on YouTube.