Taplow Youth Choir's Music Tour Diary

School / Group
Taplow Youth Choir
Teacher / Group Leader
Gillian Dibden

Taplow Youth Choir recently returned from their music tour to the Czech Republic and it sounds like they had some unforgettable musical experiences! Here, student member, Beth Sercombe, tells us how they got on. 

Taplow Youth Choir, a dynamic and passionate group of young people aged 15-19 from across Berkshire and the South East, have recently returned from a week-long tour of Prague and South Bohemia (6th-13th April). 51 choir members, a third of whom were embarking on their first ever choir tour, spent an exceptional week performing in beautiful venues across the country, as well enjoying opportunities for sightseeing and socialising with new and old friends.

The Youth Choir gave five stunning concerts in Vesili, Trebon, Mnisek pod Brdy, Karlovy Vary and Prague, performing to remarkably warm, enthusiastic and large audiences, even in the rural villages of South Bohemia. It was particularly special for the choir to see members of their audiences moved to tears by the stillness of the Latin ‘Ubi Caritas’, or smiling along to choreographed American spirituals. The hugely varied repertoire, spanning many centuries and styles, is a particularly valued and unique aspect of this choir. 

Throughout the week there was also the opportunity for singers to perform solos and duets, as well as the chance to develop in confidence as performers through member-led ensembles. However, for many on this tour, their personal highlights were the impromptu and unique musical moments; a spontaneous a cappella concert in the sunny square of Tabor, riff battles on the long coach journeys and bemusing both locals and hotel guests alike with grace sung in four-part harmony at meal times!

As well as spectacular music making, the week gave members the chance to discover the beauty and contrasts of the Czech Republic: exploring small South Bohemian villages; tasting the hot springs of the upmarket spa town of Karlov Vary; a river cruise on the Vltava and sightseeing in Prague. Over the week, lifelong friendships were made, as the choir became a tightknit unit bound by a sheer love of singing and being together. 

Gillian Dibden, the choir’s director, was thrilled with the trip and described it as:

“A privilege to be away with such well-motivated and wonderful young people - and to produce a standard of performance which would make a professional choir proud”.

The choir are now looking ahead with excitement to their next tour in 2017.

If you are interested in taking your youth or school music group to the Czech Republic, contact one of our Music Tour Specialists today. They will be very pleased to advise you on this, or any of our other school music tour destinations.