Welcome to our web site. This busy and friendly mixed choir based in Congleton, Cheshire meets weekly on Monday evenings to rehearse, and
performs four major concerts a year at local venues, including Congleton Town Hall. If you are interested in listening or in joining as a singer, please
browse our pages and find out more about us.
Handel's dramatic and moving oratorio Messiah had a rapturous reception at its first performance in 1742 and is still much loved today by audiences and singers alike.
We are delighted to welcome back for this concert professional soloists Charlotte Richardson (soprano) and Emma Stannard (mezzo soprano). Equally welcome, and appearing for the first time with the Choral Society, are Stuart Orme (bass) and the musicians of Northern Baroque who will accompany the performance.
For more information about Handel and the Messiahclick here.
Tickets for this concert:
Standard £15, Concessions £12, Student £2 (see details here) Available from:
- any choir member
- the Ticket Secretary (07884 157012 or firstname.lastname@example.org)
- Congleton Tourist Information Centre (01260 271095)
Join us to celebrate the Christmas season with carols old and new - joyful music with something for everyone. We look forward to welcoming you.
Here is a selecton of comments and feedback we have received following recent events. Click on a title to reveal the comments.
B minor Mass Singing Day with David Hill, October 2016
Quotes from guests: 'What a fantastic day and it was very well organised. A big vote of thanks to all who worked so hard behind the scenes.'
'David Hill gave a good balance between attention to detail, voice techniques and letting us have a good sing.'
'... It was extremely well organised ... and it was a lovely place to sing (I've not been to one of the singing days in Macclesfield before). It was also lovely to meet lots of new singers'
'David Hill was excellent... Good cake selection on offer at lunchtime!...[The music] was so difficult at times ... BUT it is good to be challenged!!..I will definitely book onto next year's Chilcott Singing Day.'
Grand Anniversary Concert, July 2016
Soprano soloist Charlotte Richardson tweeted: 'Congratulations @congletonchoral for a GREAT concert this evening! Thank you for having me.'
From audience members: 'Congratulations on a wonderful Town Hall Anniversary concert. The choir was well balanced and in top form. Thoroughly enjoyed the programme . I've never heard the Stainer or Maunder before but both were beautiful and well performed by all.'
'The choir was outstanding ... loved the music.'
'Beautiful singing ... brilliant top notes from the sopranos.'
From a choir member: 'Many thanks to Christopher Cromar for his inspirational conducting. This was my first concert singing with the choir in Congleton, I look forward eagerly to many more.'
Harvestehude Symphony Orchestra, May 2016
Comments from the audience: '...a unique experience to welcome a such a large orchestra to Congleton Town Hall.'
'...a rare opportunity to be 'up close and personal' to such talented musicians.'
'Dvorak's cello concerto was the highlight of the evening, featuring a sensitive and assured performance from the young cellist Jacob Stepp. Between passages of tremendous power, quieter ones allowed each section of the orchestra to show its musicality and technique, which they did admirably. It is difficult to imagine a professional orchestra bettering the technical virtuosity and musical sense manifested by this amateur unit.'
'The choir's confidence shone through... their account of Handel's music was radiant. All parts were heard clearly and diction was admirable.'
The Dream of Gerontius, April 2016
Quotes from the audience: 'A superb interpretation of this marvellous work.'
'The orchestra was magnificent and the quality of the singing was beautiful.'
'This is the 18th time I have heard Gerontius and this was one of the best performances.'
'The experience was awesome, I wouldn't have missed it for the world.'
Christmas Concerts, December 2015
Quotes from guests: 'Thank you for a splendid evening with a good varied selection of carols.'
'I enjoyed the evening concert immensely, as did the couple who were sitting next to me. It was their first visit to the Choral Society and they were really impressed.'
'I enjoyed the mix of new material...the readings were excellent...the Choral Academy and the Children's Choir in the afternoon both did well.'
'What a lovely concert in the afternoon, the Children's Choir were brilliant and it was very enjoyable.'
Autumn Concert, November 2015
Quotes from guests: 'A tremendous concert, literally raised the roof and well appreciated by the audience. Thank you.'
'Amazing ... stunning ... beautiful ... so fitting a dedication to the people of Paris.'
'It was a privilege to be in the audience... Christopher Cromar's Dubois 'Toccata' was mesmeric.'
'Fab concert! Beautiful music masterfully performed - Thank you.'
... and from a choir member: 'It was a terrific experience and a privilege to sing in this concert.'
Rutter Singing Day, October 2015
Quotes from guests: 'So much encouragement all the way through from so many people. Having spoken to several other visitors I think it quite fair to say it certainly was a particularly special experience for those of us coming as guests. "Watch me and use me," Christopher said ... testing that invitation really worked. CCS singers worked extremely hard, not only hosting throughout but generously and unobtrusively sharing their experience, spreading confidence and a joy of celebrating music that will last a very long time.'
'Thank you for a wonderful day! The choice of music was lovely and Christopher Cromar was a very supportive leader. Great accompanist, Andrew Green as well. Although I didn't find all the music easy to get to grips with, it was so good to be surrounded by so many lovely singers. i look forward to any future singing days.'
Of Love And Music, July 2015
From members of the audience: 'Wow, what a fabulous concert! CCS goes from strength to strength......'
'The Carmina Burana was stunning - no wonder there was a standing ovation'
'You could not wipe the smile off my face for the way the children’s choir sang. Their enthusiasm and commitment was absolutely superb.'
'What a great concert - really uplifting. Thank you CCS for a fantastic experience.'
'I wouldn't have missed it for the world...'
'The percussionists...were brilliant and made the performance'
Elijah, March 2015
From members of the audience: 'The most amazing evening [we have] ever attended.the emotion of the music and singing was so powerful...[we] will never miss another of your concerts'
'I really did not wish to go to this concert but I am so glad I did as it was tremendous!'
'The best thing yet!'
'Enjoyed it tremendously, a very polished performance'
'A super evening; you must have worked so hard. I'm definitely coming in July'
'Wonderful concert....there was a perfect balance and blend between the choir and the orchestra...magical unaccompanied singing from the ladies in "Lift thine eyes"'
'I think you were all absolutely fantastic. I still can't believe that a small town such as Congleton has such a professional choral society. [The music was] so spiritual and uplifting'
Christmas Concert, December 2014
From members of the audience:
'The choir gets better and better every year'
'A lovely concert with a fabulous sound'
'The concert was truly beautiful and I am still dancing on air'
'My wife and I attended your lovely concert on Saturday. I was so impressed with the Choir.....I would be very interested in joining if my voice was acceptable. I sing Bass'
Lest We Forget, November 2014
From members of the audience: 'The poem at the start - you really nailed it, stunning and the Duruflé [Requiem] was amazing.'
The Duruflé is in parts difficult for the listener and more so for the singer, it was performed extremely well, with great sensitivity. The Haydn [Nelson Mass] was so uplifting and a joy to listen to. Well done, you must be shattered!
'I thought that the concert was excellent. The music was quite difficult so more power to you all for your performance.'
'The Duruflé was absolutely beautiful' 'Best Duruflé ever, and the Haydn was uplifting' 'Duruflé such difficult music, sounded great.' 'A wonderful concert'.
From one of our choir members: 'The bass soloist was very complimentary. He hadn't sung the Duruflé before. He commented that he had heard other more well known choirs perform this piece and we CCS, were much better!'
From another of our choir members: 'Our neighbours who came to the concert said it was very enjoyable and uplifting. The Guest piece set the tone admirably.'
Singing Day with Christopher Cromar, October 2014
Tweeted by Aimee Toshnay, soprano soloist at our singing day: 'Lovely afternoon with @congletonchoral singing Mozart's Coronation Mass. Fantastic group and a most civilised way to spend a Saturday!'
From a visiting singer who joined the chorus: 'I wanted to let you know how much I enjoyed the Singing Day yesterday. It was very well organised and a joy to work with such a talented chorus master as Christopher Cromar. A great day and I hope you have many more. Alas I live too far away to consider joining your wonderful choral society, but would love to take part in future events whenever possible. Thank you again for such a super day.' (This comment sums up all the positive feedback we received from singers who attended the singing day.)
Fascinating Rhythm, July 2014
For this concert we asked audience members to complete a feedback form. Here is a small selection of their comments:
'Excellent in all respects'
'What a super change from the usual repertoire'
'Enjoyed the excellent piano duo'...'wonderful sound'...'very talented musicians' (about Christopher Cromar and Dominic John)
'Good variety, enjoyed Emily Dankworth especially, amazing voice range, very many thanks'
'Good to hear modern choral popular music; but we have never been disappointed!'
'Nice to see the choir so relaxed'
A Night At The Opera, April 2014
Extract from a review published by the Congleton Chronicle, 24th April 2014:
A Night at the Opera - and what a brilliant night it was...
People ask 'What is opera?' It is stylish, funny, dazzling, often beautiful, often sad, cruel, warm-hearted, serious and even sexy...That is what Congleton Choral Society, with four excellent guest artistes, gave us on 5th April in the Town Hall. It was an evening to cherish and remember, and to be proud that we, the audience, could hear such quality in our own town...
Thanks to all who took part in this evening's operatic journey with so many memorable moments...a big thank you to the Choral Society's great inspirational conductor Christopher Cromar, who must be proud of you all...I must make a special mention of the guest accompanist Dominic John, whose playing throughout was absolutely brilliant - the best accompanist I have ever heard.
From an audience member sent in via our web site: Congratulations to all on a truly wonderful concert. The whole programme was a delight with superb soloists and the choir sang the opera choruses magnificently with good diction and tone. The overall sound and view from the gallery was very enjoyable!!
From an alto who took part: Wow, what a night! Fantastic soloists, brilliant pianist and our musical director was, as usual, inspiring us to be at our best. How lovely it was that the audience seemed to enjoy it too.
From a member of the bass section currently not singing with us: A truly wonderful concert. Well done everyone; I was sad (and envious) not to be up there with you. My guests loved it too.
From a soprano who couldn't sing in the concert: What a sensational concert ! Sorry I was unable to sing with you but it was great to simply sit and enjoy all your hard work. Fab....u...lous! And what a pianist! Amazing.
From someone who has been involved 'by marriage' with CCS for many years: I can't remember ever hearing such superb soloists and pianist in the town hall; what a wealth of talent. We were fortunate to be in the audience last night.
From a young member of our front-of-house team: My first real taste of opera, and I enjoyed. I'm more cultured than I thought. I will be humming slightly irritating tunes for a while though. Well done CCS.
From a soprano who took part: [It was] a wonderful concert. I was in seventh heaven as were my 10 guests (had to get my brownie points in there!) who came to watch and listen. They said it was our best concert to date, loved the soloists and admired all the ladies in our evening gowns.
Overheard in the gallery as we walked on:
Don't they all look glamorous!
Christmas Concert, December 2013
Extracts from letters to Congleton Chronicle:
Full of praise for town choral society I congratulate Congleton Choral Society on a marvellous Christmas carol concert in the Town Hall... The recently formed children's choir...impressed the audience with the quality of their varied offerings that speaks volumes for future events in which they participate.
...The town is fortunate to possess such a number of talented singers who are willing to invest a considerable time rehearsing under their brilliant conductor to offer a performance that I will remember for many years. - Dr. Peter Hirst
Christmas carol concert was outstanding ...Without any doubt the Congleton Choral Society’s Christmas carol concert was just that [outstanding] in every sense of the word. ... The musical director, soloists, the readings and the choir itself were all magnificent... [and as for] the extraordinary children’s choir...it was impossible not to be moved by their performance after only about three months of rehearsal. - Neville Price.
It was a good'un as usual and the Children's Choir went down a storm. The training they'd had from Christopher Cromar clearly shone through. Hopefully it will encourage other children to join.
The audience seemed delighted with it, all my guests said the sound was amazing, stunning and precise.
We are in total awe of the standard of performance you achieve at every concert, engaging with the audience and obviously enjoying all that you do.
The Concert was a roaring success and everyone said how much they enjoyed it.
The children were absolute stars (as was Christopher [Cromar]). A well balanced programme.
[Choir members] Clare and Liam’s solos were particularly memorable.
I enjoyed [W] Terry [Fox’s] readings. The programme was a good mix of everything.
Christopher [Cromar] has done wonders with the children.
It was a joyous occasion.
Mozart's Requiem and Haydn's Harmoniemesse, November 2013
Wonderful concert...one of the best!
We were enthralled with the whole thing
It was a spine-tingling evening
The Haydn was amazing; there were moments of sheer joy
Our guests from Switzerland....were blown away by the scale of the event and the professionalism of the choir
The soprano section's top notes were effortless and beautiful