Hello! Welcome to the very first edition of Passing Notes, a monthly-ish newsletter from Kathryn Rose.
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Hello! Welcome to the very first edition of Passing Notes, a monthly-ish newsletter from Kathryn Rose.


Performances and Events

West Gallery concerts
I play the serpent in the London Gallery Quire, and sometimes sing or conduct a bit. This month will see the premiere of my setting of the Benedictus from the Book of Common Prayer. The first concert is at St. George’s German Lutheran Church, 55 Alie Street, London E1 8EB, on Wednesday 18th June at 7pm. Tickets are £5 and doors open 6.30pm. If you miss that one, or like it so much you want another, the next is at St Peter-in-the-Forest, Woodford New Road, Walthamstow, E17 3PP, on Saturday 28th June 2014 at 7pm. More information on this setting:

It was God wot dunnit!
On Sunday 22nd June my church, St Andrew's Leytonstone, is hosting a short cycle of Mystery Plays. These modern-language plays are firmly in the medieval tradition of interpretation and community involvement, and after a lot of hard work by those involved I am looking forward to the production. All proceeds will go to the Organ Fund at St Andrew's, so I'd love it if you could come along. More information from

Song Cycle pilgrimage
Starting on 20th July some friends and I will be cycling to Norwich, performing along the way, in a sort of musical bicycle pilgrimage. If you're feeling a bit London-bound, there will also be a few pre-pilgrimage performances. On 5th July we'll be performing at St Andrew's E11 1JD as part of the Summer Fayre, probably around noon, and then at 4pm at St Edmund Chingford E4 9DS as part of their Flower Festival. The next Saturday we'll be doing a lunchtime concert at St Peter's Vauxhall. For more information see

Ongoing Projects

Open Volume
I am looking for words and music for a hymnal. The working title is “Open Volume: singable, photocopiable hymns”. The intent is to create a body of new hymnody which will be available to churches as a supplement, or as individual pieces; to showcase the work of writers and composers who might not gain the attention of traditional publishers; and to make the advantages of Creative Commons licensing of church music more widely known. If you or someone you know writes hymns, either texts or tunes, send them along to for more information.

My composing plate is pretty full at the moment
I am looking at six different competitions with deadlines from 1st July to 2nd November, and that's after scrapping a few! I'm also still planning to write one or two more pieces for Song Cycle, and at least one for a special occasion at church this summer. All of that means I will try to continue with online publishing of two new choral works per month for a little while yet, though it's conceivable I will need to slow down at some point.

The box marked "organ donations" is for financial contributions only
At church, in addition to the usual planning, I'm thinking about the next organ fundraiser. This is scheduled for 25th October but I don't know yet what it will be. I've been thinking about one song to the tune of another, or perhaps a sort of "Top 20" auction-style event where people donate to make sure their favourites are sung, but I'm very open to other ideas. We still need £10000 to repair the bellows and I would dearly love to raise it by Christmas; past events have included a 30-hour hymnathon, various concerts and performances, and two months of me dyeing my hair in liturgical colours. (I've stopped now, but you can still donate at if you missed it.)


I'm pleased that one of my pieces, "Lines Composed In A Wood On A Windy Day", has been selected for a community choir songbook, "Sing For Our Planet". It should go on sale in August. More information from

Most of my choral music is on the Choral Public Domain Library, at It might be easier to browse at if you are looking for specific voicing.


Some Things I Like

My friend Thomas Thurman has a twice-weekly newsletter called Gentle Readers. It is full of poetry and charm. I won't reproduce the content here but do let me know if you'd like me to forward you a copy (Thomas does encourage sharing); alternately you could pledge to support Thomas at and make contact that way. I've not yet managed to meet up with Thomas in person, though I have set a few of his poems to music.

This weekend I made this cheesecake recipe, with some modifications:
I've been using this recipe since around 2002. It's delicious. It also freezes beautifully, which is perfect if you want to take some on a summer picnic. I think Leon Hirschbaum's oven must have run a little cool, though, because even with the water bath I find it does get a bit burnt if I don't knock about 10°C off the cooking temperatures. And I always use a bit more cheese, mascarpone instead of ricotta, and only 1 cup of sugar.

Next month...

...I hope to include a demo recording of "I walked in darkness", sung by Matthew Curtis of I'll also have some more information about the Song Cycle pilgrimage. It might not be so long (phew), because there won't be the same backlog of things to tell you about as this month. What would you like to see included?


My e-mail address is and I'd love to hear from you. My work is community supported, not commercially supported. Please pledge something at if you can afford to, and please don't if you can't.

Copyright © 2014 Kathryn Rose, All rights reserved.

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