Easter Choral Course



The Trust's annual Easter choral course has been running since 1994 with the aim of introducing young singers to some of the great sacred choral repertoire that they may not otherwise encounter in their professional training.  Emphasis has always been on period performances, using a baroque instrumental ensemble when appropriate. 


It has been the Trust's policy to give opportunities to aspiring young conductors for whom, in many cases, directing combined choral and orchestral forces has been a new experience.  Happily several have since gone on to enjoy successful professional careers including Garry Walker (Permanent Guest Conductor of the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra), Robert Houssart (a former organist, currently conducting with major international opera companies) and Darren Hargan (currently working in Zurich).  Likewise the countless young singers who maybe sang their first challenging aria in Norfolk; the many instrumentalists who first encountered a period instrument; the violinist who led for the first time or the lower string player who discovered continuo playing - all have gained enormously from the South Creake experience.



Singers are usually recruited from the British conservatoires by personal contact through teachers.  But increasingly participants have come from overseas, particularly the instrumentalists who attend thriving period performance courses in Holland, Belgium, France and further afield.  The Yorke Trust provides accommodation, food and tuition in return for a modest contribution to offset overheads.


 Assistance can sometimes be found in the form of bursaries for students who are unable to fund the full cost of travel themselves.


The Easter concert is generally performed twice.   In 2013 the ’Royal Choral Masterpieces’ where performed by The Yorke Trust Chorus and Baroque Ensemble at Binham Priory and St. Mary’s Church, South Creake.