Omega & Alpha

The end and the beginning

Our 10th Anniversary Concert

To mark the 10th Anniversary of the World Premiere of Omega and Alpha, we held a special celebration concert at the Westland Entertainment Venue, Yeovil on Sunday 16th April 2023.

The concert was sung by a stellar cast consisting of an 80-piece choir with soloists Jonathan Ansell (Tenor), Marta Fontaneles-Simmons (Mezzo) and John Savournin (Bass-Baritone). The piece was conducted by the composer, Martin Emslie and the organ accompaniment played by Stuart Whatton.

The Music

Omega & Alpha is a fusion of sacred music and the highly descriptive style found in musical theatre, offering a fresh rendition of the Passion of Christ.

It uses modern techniques such as free movement between keys and time signatures without losing the essential thread of memorable melodies and thought-provoking lyrics. There is substantial interaction between the soloists and the choir resulting in an exciting and fresh version of the Easter story.

The vocal parts have been written such that choirs of all abilities can approach the work with confidence. The harmonies are complex but entirely singable and the instrumental parts are challenging but equally playable.

Both the performers and the audience alike will be captivated by the pace of the piece and be moved by the emotions of the characters.

Now also available in Spanish and German!

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The Performers

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Jonathan Ansell

Tenor

Jonathan is one of the UK’s most admired tenors, with a unique ability to truly connect with his audience through the gift of his soaring high tenor voice. Nominated for a Classical Brit Award Johnathan now has sold over 2 million Albums world wide…

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Marta Fontanals-Simmons

Mezzo

Looking forward to the 2022/23 season, Fontanals-Simmons performs Jack The Wreckers Ethel Smyth with the Deutsches Symphonie-Orchester Berlin and Robin Ticciati; recitals with Iain Burnside at Wigmore Hall and the Lammermuir Festival…

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John Savournin

Bass-Baritone

Alongside his singing career, John has created productions of opera and musical theatre for his award-winning chamber opera company Charles Court Opera, and recently made his main stage directorial debut with Opera North. Recent directing engagements include his main…

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Stuart Whatton

Organist

Stuart Whatton’s musical education began at Canterbury Cathedral Choir School and took him via the King’s School Canterbury to University College Oxford, where he was organ scholar from 1981 to 1984.

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Composer

Martin Emslie

Martin Emslie lives in Somerset and is an experienced musician, composer and Musical Director. He is a church organist, choral conductor and has been Musical Director for over 50 shows. He is a member of ABCD, ACDA and the International Federation of Choral Music, holds an MSc, AMusLCM and was awarded the prestigious Fellowship of the London College of Music for the composition of Omega and Alpha.

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BBC Somerset Radio Show

On Good Friday Martin Emslie joined Simon Parkin on BBC Somerset to discuss the upcoming concert for Omega and Alpha. During the interview they talk about the first ever performance at Wells Cathedral 10years ago, ongoing rehearsals taking place currently and even discuss Martin’s new work coming soon; Hansel, Gretel and the Enchanted Forest. You can listen to the whole interview in the link below.

The

Choir

The choir are central to the plot and are involved in most of the sections unlike many other works in which the choir have long periods of inactivity. 

There are two versions now available. The first version takes the story up to the resurrection of Christ. This version takes approximately 80 minutes to perform. 

The longer version continues the story to the events of the Ascension (The Omega) and Pentecost (The Alpha). This version takes 2 hours to perform and would be suitable to be performed either as an oratorio with the three soloists or as a staged production with the soprano and baritone parts being shared amongst a number of soloists. 

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