Did you know that whether a visitor or a member of the congregation at Exeter Cathedral you wouldn’t hear a note of music but for the financial support from the Exeter Cathedral Music Foundation Trust?
The organ would cease to function.
There would be no choir
There would be no sheet music
There would be no robes
There would be no Director of Music
And the list goes on…
The cost of running the music runs into many thousands of pounds.
No – this isn’t a plea for financial support, or it could be if you, the reader so wished.
People take the glorious singing of Choral Evensong for granted. They would be denied the chance of hearing Tallis, Byrd, Parry and Tavener – just a sprinkling of composers who have been drawn to writing anthems based on some of the most poignant texts that have appeared over the centuries.
What about Christmas Carols? The congregation would be forced to sing them without accompaniment as the organ would be out of tune and the pipes full of gunge. Can you imagine how ghastly this would sound – the pitch would drop within the first two lines.
The poor choristers would luck out on two Christmas dinners: the one they have on Christmas Day at school and that which devoted mums cook a day later.
Music within the Anglican Church has, over the centuries, become a ‘must’. Of course it is perfectly possible for said services to take place, but they’re not the same. When I take my grandson to church, it’s the hymns that grab his attention otherwise we count the number of Amens that appear during the service, comparing notes at the end. I wouldn’t want to be the Granny who drags a child into the House of God without the temptation of singing ‘Praise my soul’ let alone ‘Onward Christian Soldiers’.
Music plays a vital part in the daily life of Exeter Cathedral. Visitors and members of the congregation would feel bereft without it. The Choir is one of the finest in Britain and deserves to be heard at every opportunity; an organ recital likewise. A sung service brings that extra and indefinable quality to a staunch believer of the Christian faith.
We must maintain this wonderful entity that exists in Exeter’s glorious building. We must never let it die. This is why the Foundation is so important. Without support, the music would collapse within a very short space of time.