Diocese of Leeds

German and English dioceses mark 21 year friendship with choir tour

Sun 15 Sep 2019
By Premier Journalist

A German choir, whose church district has been partnered with the Diocese of Leeds for 21 years, will visit the county for a singing tour. 

The Augustinian Church Choir, from Erfurt, are visiting next month for a nine day tour to mark the partnership between the Diocese and the Erfurt Kirchenkreis in central Germany. 

The choir will visit churches and cathedrals across the county including the cathedrals of Bradford, Wakefield and Ripon, alongside Leeds Minster, Halifax Minster and St Margaret’s Church in Ilkley.

There will also be stops to visit York Minister and Ilkley Moor. 



The choir will perform work by Johann Sebastian Bach, Felix Mendelssohn-Bartholdy, Flor Peeters, Gustav Holst, Arvo Pärt and John Rutter.

The partnership between the two countries began formally on the 1st November 1997, growing out of an earlier link between Bradford and Erfurt that began in the late 1980s.

Rosalind Beeson, chair of the Diocese’s Erfurt and Leeds link group, said: “We are delighted to welcome the Augustiner-Kantorei to perform in venues across West Yorkshire.

“It will be wonderful to hear this massed choir perform sacred choral music from a wide range of composers from the 15th to the 21st centuries.

“This visit builds on two recent choir tours to Erfurt from the Bradford area in 2013 and Bradford Cathedral Choir’s centenary tour earlier in 2019.

“We are very glad to be able to reciprocate and to strengthen our partnership with Erfurt, recognising our shared musical heritage.”

Alex Berry, Director of Music at Bradford Cathedral, said: “It’s a real joy to be working with the Augustiner-Kantorei who are a massive choir from Erfurt.

“We took the Bradford Cathedral choir over to Erfurt earlier this year and they were our hosts, and welcomed us so generously, and we are very pleased to welcome them to our cathedral.”

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