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Alex achieves gold award

Regular worshippers at St Andrew’s and viewers of the online services will be delighted (but perhaps not surprised) to learn that Alex McNeice has been awarded the Royal School of Church Music Gold Award. This has been the fruit of a great deal of hard work, assisted by a little talent as well, of course. Since the Gold Award has been running (about 15 years or so, I think) there have been to my knowledge 9 awarded in Devon and Cornwall, so that tells you something about Alex’s achievement.

For the exam (held in late July in Sarum College, Salisbury) Alex had to prepare a hymn, a psalm and a major solo (“But thou didst not leave his soul in hell” from Handel’s “Messiah”), the tenor parts of two major anthems, five further anthems in which he needed to be able to sing other voice parts, sight reading, a service which Alex had to devise, including writing his own prayer, writing programme notes on the music he was singing, and lots of questions on the church’s year and appropriate music. Needless to say the exam took about an hour. 

We will be presenting the award officially at Evensong on October 3rd, and it will also be presented in Exeter Cathedral on 23rd October.

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