The Genesis Chorale is a mixed choir of more than 60 voices who are based in and around the West Byfleet area of Surrey.
Lewis Gaston took the post of Musical Director of The Genesis Chorale in December 2012. We look forward to a long and successful relationship with this up and coming young conductor. Rehearsal accompaniment is supplied by Julie Aherne on the piano.
The choir performs at least three concerts each year in the Spring, the Summer and at Christmas and tries to achieve a balance of singing new and lesser known works in addition to the firm favourites which are well known to audiences.
The choir has always set out to be the friendliest in the area. New members rarely leave, because a heavy emphasis is placed on enjoyment both at rehearsals and in concert. For this reason, auditions are not required, and voices of all standards are invited to join. An ability to read music is an advantage, but not essential.
“Gemini Chorale” was founded in December 1979 under the Musical Directorship of Keith Mansfield. The first concert was given in October 1981. In the year 2000 Keith retired as Musical Director and the choir was renamed “Genesis Chorale”.
Over the years the choir has grown to over 70 members. Each year they give Christmas, Easter and Summer concerts which include a mix of new and lesser known choral works alongside the better known favourites.
Recent performances include Saint-Saëns’ Samson & Delilah, A Merry Jazzy Christmas, Poetry Please – Music of English Landscapes, Moravian Melodies, Schumann’s Requiem, A Celebration of Independence Day, Bizet’s Pearl Fishers in a joint concert with Larkhill Choral Society, Poulenc’s Gloria, the Wind in the Willows, Puccini’s Messa di Gloria, Gounod’s Messe Solenelle, Requiems of Mozart, Faure and Haydn, Lauridsen’s Lux Aeterna plus operatic favourites and some lighter secular works. The concerts, held in St John’s Church in West Byfleet, are supported by professional soloists and musicians and attract large audiences.
The Chorale has been led by several Musical Directors over the years and more recently has forged links with young conductors who have recently graduated from the Royal Academy of Music, Royal Holloway College or the Royal College of Music.
Musical Director – Lewis Gaston
Lewis Gaston works as a conductor in the UK and abroad. He was Guest Conductor for the Brasov Philarmonic (Romania) in 2013, returned to conduct the Berlin Sinfonietta in 2014 and was Guest Conductor for the Toscana Classica Orchestra in 2015. He is Music Director of Opera Holloway, Guildford Opera, Genesis Chorale and acts as Guest Conductor to a number of London orchestras.
As a conductor and lecturer for Opera Prelude, Lewis has given many opera lectures including the series: ‘After bel canto’, as well as special events such as the UK premiere of an opera by the forgotten composer Saverio Mercadante. He also directed Gluck’s Orphée as part of a broader discussion of Berlioz, Pauline Viardot and Lord Leighton, three artistic figures fascinated by the myth of Orpheus.
Last year Lewis conducted well known operas including Carmen, Turandot, Nabucco and Don Pasquale, as well as some less performed works including Bizet’s Djamileh, Weber’s Abu Hassan and Smetana’s The Bartered Bride. In 2017 Lewis will be working on operas by Viardot, Delibes, Saint-Saëns (with Genesis Chorale), Verdi and Mozart.
Please see www.lewisgaston.com for a full biography.