On Friday 29th April, St. Francis Church in Victoria was once again the venue of another concert in this year’s edition of Gaulitana: A Festival of Music. This time, it was a concert of sacred music given by Cantica Alba.
This 10-strong Scotland-based choral group (whose members hail from all Britain and also includes a half-Maltese) directed by Michael Harris, the organist and master of music at St. Giles Cathedral, Edinburgh, was formed just at the beginning of 2010. Yet it has already attained a profoundly mature sound with the various sections splendidly supporting and complimenting each other resulting a typically-British chapel-singing vocal style which excellently brought forth the various nuances offered by the completely a cappella repertoire performed.
The homogeneous sound was evident throughout the recital whether when singing the Renaissance motets (by Tallis, Byrd and Gibbons) or the Romantic works (by Bruckner, Brahms, Rheinberger, Grieg and Stanford) or 20th century or contemporary compositions (by Durufle, MacMillan and Jackson). The excellent performance was undoubtedly enhanced by the church’s good acoustics.
This was very much appreciated by the sizeable audience led by Gaulitana artistic director, Mro. Colin Attard, and Franciscan Superior, Rev. George Attard.