about

Aurora Nova were founded by Patrick Craig in 1996 to perform a concert of sacred music for women's voices in London, raising money for charities supporting victims of domestic violence and breast cancer.  Made up of some of the finest choral singers in London, their voices make up the top lines of many of this country's finest groups including the Tallis Scholars, the Sixteen, the Gabrieli Consort, the Kings Consort and the BBC Singers.  The following year Aurora Nova was invited to become the first all-female professional choir to lead the Sunday services at St Paul's Cathedral. This debut caused considerable interest in the national press and led to appearances in the Independent newspaper and the news programme London Tonight.  Since then 18 women have sung 50 Sundays at the Cathedral, each with three services, and encompassing a vast array of sacred repertoire.  The group has always championed new music and has commissioned a dozen new works, including pieces by Dobrinka Tabakova, Elizabeth Winters, Philip Cooke, Katherine Dienes and Joanna Marsh.  In 1998 the group toured North America to great acclaim. Since 2009 Aurora Nova has performed annual Orchestral Masses in July with the City of London Sinfonia, including a spectacular new arrangement of Gounod's Messe solennelle de St Cecile for the opening weekend of the Olympic Games in 2012.  In 2013 the group celebrated the anniversaries of Francis Poulenc and Benjamin Britten with a Holy Week Meditation in St Paul's featuring music from Dialogues des Carmelites, and a Britten 100th birthday concert in St James's Church, Piccadilly including Ceremony of Carols and a stunning arrangement of ​Rejoice in the Lamb. 2014 began with a celebration of the life and works of John Tavener in what would have been his 70th birthday month, and went on to feature new commissions from Eugenio Fagiani and Paul Crabtree.  2015 saw Aurora Nova celebrating the 60th, 70th and 80th birthdays of Bob Chilcott, John Rutter and Arvo Pärt in three appearances at St Paul's during the summer holidays.  They also gave the first performance of Elizabeth Winter's Aurora Nova Service and the London premiere of Cecilia McDowall's Missa Mariae.  2016 began with tributes to Bernard Rose, Roger-Ducasse, and Naji Hakim and continued in the summer with performances of a new Jazz Mass by Bob Chilcott, and another performance of Gounod's St Cecilia Mass featuring Elizabeth Meister.  Aurora Nova will celebrate twenty years of singing at St Paul's in 2017.  Celebrations began with a joint Evensong with Oxford's liturgical girls' choir Frideswide Voices on April 23rd.  This was thought to be the first ever service sung by a joint choir of children and adults in the classic Cathedral Choir formation which is entirely female.  Our next performance will be a celebration of our work with the City of London Sinfonia in a performance of Haydn's Little Organ Mass ​at 11am on Sunday 23rd July.