Offering solace amid the uncertainty, the smash hit album from The Poor Clares of Arundel is just what the doctor ordered.

Brighton Festival Chorus and Youth Choir are basking in reflected glory, thanks to the runaway success of a choral album produced by our music directors.

Light for the World by The Poor Clares of Arundel flew to the top of the classical album charts on its release in autumn 2020. Enjoyed all over the globe in the run-up to Christmas, this blissful collection of sacred anthems and plainchant, sung by a choir of nuns, is still holding the number one spot in the Gramophone Specialist Classical Chart. We couldn’t be more delighted!

Recorded live in their chapel, 20 miles west of Brighton, The Poor Clares’ album was rehearsed and produced by our musical directors, James Morgan and Juliette Pochin, who also provided many of the arrangements sung by the choir.

The Community of Poor Clares, which was founded by Saint Clare of Assisi and Saint Francis of Assisi in 1212, was originally called the Order of Poor Ladies. Poor by name but rich in talent, the 17-strong choir of the Arundel community rehearses once a week and sings the Divine Office seven times a day, but had never recorded an album before. The process turned out to be an adventure, bringing joy and energy to the whole community.

“Because Juliette and James made it such fun, we looked forward to it and really enjoyed it”, says Sister Clare Ruva, who is originally from Zimbabwe.

“The Poor Clares album has struck a chord both in the UK and overseas with people seeking calm and solace from what has been a turbulent year”, say James and Juliette. “It’s been a huge pleasure to collaborate with them on this recording, to be able to create some new works for them based on texts they hold dear, and then to see it touch so many people.”

Light for the World by The Poor Clares of Arundel is out now on Decca Records.