Call For Singers for St Michael & All Angels

Hymnathon planned to raise funds

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A Chiswick church is to hold a ‘Hymnathon’ later this month, to raise money for its new organ and building project. The choir and congregation at St Michael & All Angels, Bedford Park, will take it in turns to sing the entire New English Hymnal from start to finish.
The church last performed the feat exactly 25 years ago, in February 1987, when it took more than 30 hours to sing the 542 hymns. The Hymnathon will be led, as it was then, by Oliver West, who was St Michael’s organist for 30 years. It will begin at Noon on Friday February 24th and run through the night till around 7pm on Saturday 25th.

St Michael’s has invited other churches, choirs, singers and musicians to join in and help raise money by sponsoring the hymns and the performers. Those taking part include the West London Bach Singers, the Hogarth Singers, Chiswick and Bedford Park Preparatory School, Orchard House School and the Arts Educational Schools London (Arts Ed), where the alumni include Catherine Zeta Jones, Julie Andrews, Martin Clunes and Will Young.

“We joined them for the first hymnathon in 1987 and a quarter of a century later it is a privilege for our students to help launch the 2012 version” said Jane Harrison, the principal of ArtsEd. “We wish St Michael & All Angels every success - and I look forward to singing along too at some point.”

St Michael’s is inviting people to sponsor their favourite hymns – and to join in for as long as they like. The 542 hymns are listed, hour by hour, in the church and on the Hymnathon website:

The hymn that raises the largest sum will be sung as the Grand Finale on the Saturday evening. St Michael’s is publishing   a chart of the top ten hymns. The current No 1 is Guide me O Thou Great Redeemer, well ahead of its nearest rivals.
The Hymnathon is also backed by local businesses, including the estate agents Savills and Andrew Nunn Associates, Andreas Georghiou fruit and vegetables, Macken Brothers butchers, the Tabard pub, Divine Fairtrade Chocolate, BCL Consulting, and

Breakfast and afternoon tea will be served on the Saturday, when some of the most popular hymns are due to be sing.

The vicar of St Michael & All Angels, Father Kevin Morris, said: “We think this is a great way to get the whole community involved in our new Organ and Parish Rooms Appeal, which we hope will bring benefits to the whole communty. Our organ is on its last legs and we are also building two new meeting rooms to cope with growing demand.”


February 13, 2012

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