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Kent resident, Laura Plumptre, commutes up to London from Canterbury regularly to sing with The Bach Choir. She says that singing has become a way of life for her since she sang in the Ripieno choir in the St Matthew Passion when at Notting Hill & Ealing High School aged just 14.
Laura Plumptre is a good example of the commitment shown by The Bach Choir’s 250 singers who commute to London from all over the Home Counties to sing at rehearsals and concerts in town as well as abroad.
Speaking of her passion for singing and for The Bach Choir, she says: “I love The Bach Choir for its focus, its singers; how it helps disadvantaged young people find their singing voice; and for showing the positive impact of choral singing on mental health, physical well being, spirituality and the joy that comes from communal effort. It is a cultural force of creative excellence that demonstrate its choral leadership by the miracle of making great music together.”
Laura’s working life involves her in organising events at Goodnestone Park in Kent as well as managing events for Kidney Research UK. Her husband Francis runs Goodnestone Park Gardens where his parents lived. The gardens are one of the great ‘snowdrop’ gardens in England with millions on display each spring.
“My late mother-in-law, Lady FitzWalter, who died three years ago was a concert pianist and a great gardening plants woman. I’ve been so lucky in that I had all that, music and gardening in common with her.”
“Prior to moving to Kent I was a chartered surveyor in London and persuaded my boss, Julian Briant, to join The Bach Choir too. He’s a keen member now and we chat at rehearsals and catch up. My father Richard Price has also sung for many years. He was the Chairman of The Bach Choir after Leo Rothschild. His job was to bring the Choir into the 21st Century by thinking a lot more commercially.”
In 2011 the Choir collaborated with John Rutter and the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra on The Colours of Christmas, which reached No 3 in the Official Classical Charts. In 2013, it also worked on projects for BBC Radio 3, BBC One, Sky Arts and Sky Sports News.
The Bach Choir, one of the world’s leading choruses, has sung in prestigious venues around the UK, collaborated with the Rolling Stones, and worked on blockbuster films including Ridley Scott’s Prometheus.
Now the choir, whose history includes such notable names as Sir Charles Villiers Stanford and Ralph Vaughan Williams, can also add the title of the brainiest cultural institution in Britain to its honours board. The 140-year-old institution was crowned the inaugural winner of Sky Arts’ show The Great Culture Quiz, which pitted some of the UK’s biggest cultural bodies against each other