A CHORAL society will welcome back a local classical singer for what promises to be a “beautiful and emotional” concert.

The Maldon Choral Society will be performing a concert of a classic Catholic hymn Stabat Mater, welcoming back local classical soprano Emily Onsloe, who recently graduated the Guildhall School of Music and Drama.

Emily will be bringing along her talented young friends as guest soloists to perform during the concert.

The concert will take place on Saturday April 1, and will be a particularly appropriate musical choice for the pre-Easter season, as it is based on the Catholic hymn to the Virgin Mary, which portrays her suffering as Jesus Christ’s mother during his crucifixion. The title comes from its first line, ‘Stabat Mater dolorosa’ which means ‘the sorrowful mother was standing’.

The concert will be based on Czech composer Antonín Dvo?ák’s version of the hymn, which he composed in 1877.

Dvo?ák’s first piece of a religious nature, his setting of Stabat Mater, was as a reaction to the death of his daughter, Josefa. It was premiered in Prague in 1880. It was very successfully performed in London in 1883, leading to many other performances in the United Kingdom and United States.

In his career, Dvo?ák made nine invited visits to England, often conducting performances of his own works.

Emily Onsloe is an accomplished singer, saxophonist and clarinet player from Essex, who has performed guest solos for the choral society many times before.

The choir will be conducted by Gillian Ward Russell, with Ben Comeau providing organ accompaniment.

There are no auditions, but an ability to follow written music is an advantage, and is open to everyone.

The concert will take place at All Saints’ Church in Maldon on April 1 from 7.30pm. Tickets are £12 in advance or £14 on the door.

Call 01621 856503.