FS Records launched our second release, A Ceremony of Psalms. The disc contains a mixture of British music for voices, brass and organ, performed by Cornish ensembles St Mary’s Singers and Abbey Brass.and features heavily the works of Paul Drayton, including the first recording of his Three Places in Old Cornwall for trumpet and organ and his five-movement work A Ceremony of Psalms.
Francis provided a variety of technical support and advisory services for the extensive live-streaming operation undertaken at the Cornwall International Male Choral Festival 2019 held in Truro Cathedral.
Francis recorded the chamber choir Albarosa at their come-back concert Winter Nights on 10 May at the Collegiate Church of St Endellion in North Cornwall.
A busy weekend saw Francis step in as a last-minute subsitute tenor soloist for two performances of Handel’s oratorio Israel in Egypt, to critical acclaim: ‘his pure tone and careful phrasing were a delight’, as well as RSCM Cornwall’s annual come-and-sing performance of Stainer’s Crucifixion, sung with bass-baritone Jacob Dennison.
After over 12 months of work, FS Records produced its first release – an album of mostly little-known lute music from the early 16th century, played by the lutenist and lutemaker Martin Shepherd (Francis’s father). The album is available on CD and on iTunes, CD Baby, Amazon Music & Google Play.
A concert recorded earlier in the year by Truro Cathedral Choir and the BBC Concert Orchestra was broadcast on BBC Radio 3. The concert, which featured two large-scale orchestral and choral works by Dobrinka Tabakova, also featured singers from local schools and the Cornwall Youth Chamber Choir. Kynance Cove, specially commissioned from the BBC Concert Orchestra’s composer-in-residence, will form the backbone of a disk of Tabakova’s works to be released on the Regent label in early 2019.
Francis was appointed by the Cornwall Music Education Hub as Vocal Mentor for the Cornwall County Youth Choir, and piano accompanist to the Truro branch of the Cornwall Girls’ and Boys’ Choirs.
Francis embarked on his most significant recording project to date, and the microlabel FS Records was born.
Francis hosted a pre-concert interview with the artists and page-turned for a recital given by violinist Tasmin Little and pianist John Lenehan at the Hall for Cornwall. Francis also began a project recording some of composer Becky McGlade’s new choral music.
Francis accompanied award-winning Cornish male-voice ensemble 8 in a bar in their concert for the Roseland Music Society in Portscatho.
Francis gave the world première of Cornwall-based composer Becky McGlade’s composition for tenor and piano, This England, at a lunchtime concert in Truro Methodist Church.
Francis directed a small group of musicians and countertenor Colin Wilson in a highly-acclaimed concert of two of Bach’s solo cantatas, Ich habe genug and Vergnügte Ruh, in Truro Cathedral.
Francis appears on a newly released CD of Philip Stopford’s choral works by Truro Cathedral Choir and the BBC National Orchestra of Wales.
Francis was appointed to Truro School’s Music Department as Music Coordinator, starting from 30th August. Truro School is a coeducational independent day and boarding school, the largest in Cornwall, with over 1000 pupils aged 3-18.
Francis appears on the latest CD release by Truro Cathedral Choir on Regent Records, featuring Lobo’s Missa Vox Clamantis alongside other Spanish and Portugese polyphony.
Francis played a recital of romantic cello repertoire as part of Truro Cathedral’s Saturday lunchtime series, at 1pm on Saturday 6 May. Music by Brahms, Bridge, and Elgar. Further details below.
On Sunday 2 April (Passion Sunday) Francis accompanied the Sung Eucharist at Truro Cathedral, sung by Laudate! Chamber Choir, and later that day will appear as tenor soloist in RSCM Cornwall’s annual performance of Stainer’s The Crucifixion.
On 6 April, Francis played cello in a recital by countertenor Colin Wilson and pianist Paul Drayton to celebrate the arrival of a new piano at Epiphany House. Music includes Buxtehude and Purcell. Further details below.
Francis began work as accompanist for the Penzance-based chamber choir Laudate!.
Francis joined the Endelienta Scholars for a concert of music by Parry, Lauridsen, Tarney, and others at St Endellion Collegiate Church, North Cornwall.
Francis directed the City of Truro Brass Band, as they provided part of the entertainment at the annual Truro Day event, attended by approx. 5000 people at Boscawen Park, Truro.
Francis performed as part of Truro Cathedral Choir in a concert entitled ‘Great British Choral Anthems’ on 30th September, featuring the City of London Sinfonia. Music by Handel, Macmillan, and others.
Francis directed the City of Truro Brass Band at the re-opening of the historic Sunny Corner area just outside Truro, on Sunday 14th August, in the presence of the Mayor and other diginitaries.
Francis accompanied tenor Louis Watkins as part of a concert for the Roseland Music Society at Portscatho Memorial Hall, on Saturday 16th July.
Francis joined Cornwall Concert Orchestra in their concert on 23rd July in Newquay as pianist and second percussionist.
Francis was appointed to the committee of RSCM Cornwall (incorporating the Truro Diocesan Choral Union) as Area Membership Officer and Schools Network Officer.
Francis was officially installed into the office of Lay Vicar at Truro Cathedral during the Sung Eucharist on Sunday 1st May.
Truro Cathedral Choir recorded a CD of Spanish and Portugese polyphony for the Regent label. Release expected late 2016/early 2017.
Francis began work as Tenor Lay Vicar in Truro Cathedral Choir on 19th April, and was appointed as Musical Director of the City of Truro Brass Band on 30th April.
Francis appeared as tenor soloist in a concert by the Dyfed Choir on 19th March in St Mary’s, Tenby. Music included Schubert’s Mass in G and Haydn’s Little Organ Mass.
Francis appears as a soloist on two tracks of the Choir of Merton College, Oxford’s latest CD, Viri Galilei – Favourite Anthems from Merton, released on 18th March.
Francis’s short anthem O God, who by the leading of a star was premièred by St Davids Cathedral Choir at a midweek evensong on 21st January.
Started work at St Davids Cathedral as a Choral Scholar.
Graduated from the University of Oxford with a high 2:i in Music.
Recorded the CD Viri Galilei – Favourite anthems from Merton with the Choir of Merton College, Oxford.
Took part in Passiontide at Merton – a weekend festival of concerts and services centered around the Passion of our Lord at Merton College, Oxford.
Members of the Choir of Merton College, Oxford gave the first performance of Francis’s anthem Set me as a seal, a setting of words from the Song of Solomon.