Music’s appeal, so far as the size of audiences goes, is sometimes mystifying. The Yorkshire Symphony Orchestra have played British music to many empty seats in Leeds Town Hall lately. Last night at St. Chad’s Church, Far Headingley, was hardly big enough for the numbers who were drawn by a recital of British music by Dr. Melville Cook and his Leeds Guild of Singers.
This recital, the second of a Festival series, had the co-operation of a section of the Y.S.O. with Francis Jackson at the organ.
Purcell was represented by four fairly long works carefully and competently sung and played. The strings and two trumpets heightened the glory of his Te Deum, while “The Blessed Virgin’s Expostulation,” to Maurice Miles’s arrangement, had some beautiful solo soprano work by Mary Worth. The other items in this edifying group were the “Song of Solomon” anthem, “My Beloved Spake,” and “Evening Hymn,” the latter with Grace Goy as contralto soloist.
Arthur Taylor was the soloist for the baritone parts in Vaughan Williams’s “Five Mystical Songs” to which the choir imparted an exquisite tenderness.