Founded in 1974, Conductor: Leslie Olive

A Suffolk Choir of Excellence

Welcome to The Eye Bach Choir

The Eye Bach Choir was founded in 1974 by Merlin and Ann Channon and is one of the foremost choirs in Suffolk. It has over fifty singers and a tradition of excellent performance. Although we honour J.S.Bach in our title, our repertoire covers works from the sixteenth to the twentieth century. It ranges from Byrd to Britten and Tippett; from Bach, Handel and Mozart to Mendelssohn and Brahms as well as Monteverdi, Pergolesi and Vivaldi.

We are proud to be of the sort of calibre choir that we often engage several professional soloists in grand works performing with the excellent Kingfisher Sinfonietta. For smaller scale works we are accompanied by the famous Binns organ in Eye Parish Church, or by grand piano. We have a range of concerts each year to experience a variety of different types of music in different settings.

Our founder Merlin Channon said of us before his death that “The Eye Bach Choir is sociable, highly articulate, and has a wonderful spirit!”. Come to one of our concerts and find out for yourself – we always welcome new faces! And our concerts are an experience not to be missed.

Reviews

  • Russia came to Eye Church in this concert of Rachmaninov and folk music, directed by Leslie Olive. Composed during the First World War, two years before the revolution, the ‘Vespers’ seemed like the end of the Russian Church. A century later, those gentle alleluias are still pouring out, seeming to show an inextricable link between […]

    Russia came to Eye Church

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  • What a wonderful performance the Eye Bach Choir made of the Rachmaninov Vespers. The sound was mesmerising. Singing a cappella one realises what a glorious sound the choir makes.The opening was stunning. I only wish we could have heard more movements. Music Lyra were also first rate and were a real discovery. It was good […]

    Mesmerising Sound!

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  • I haven’t been to a concert like that before. It was really good. I thought the power produced by the choir was amazing. I will certainly come again! A Resident of Eye

    Amazing Power of the Choir

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  • Two versions of Glory, those of Poulenc and Puccini, were on offer at Eye Church. The concert began with Faure’s Pavane by the Kingfisher Orchestra, serpentine and stately but with a passionate undertow. Poulenc’s Gloria is 20th Century music with that feeling of trouble beneath the time-honoured religious sentiments. Under Leslie Olive’s direction the choir […]

    Two versions of Glory, ample expression in this touching concert

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  • Outstanding Bach from Eye Bach Choir and the Kingfisher Sinfonietta on Saturday in Eye Church, with the Magnificat (in D), the Cantata that subsequently went into the Gloria of the Mass in B Minor, and the Vivaldi Gloria. Authoritative singing supported by excellent string leading from Beth Spendlove, delightful flute and oboe obligate, and absolutely […]

    Outstanding Bach!

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  • On Saturday in Eye Church Eye Bach Choir performed the two requiems by the twentieth century French composers Durufle and Faure. The choir was accompanied on the recently installed magnificent Binns organ by Ian le Grice whose playing was outstanding in its sensitivity and mastery of the challenging and intricate score. His clarity of playing […]

    Requiem Perfection

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  • Shirtsleeves and coloured tops were a relaxed feature of this Eye Town Hall concert conducted by Leslie Olive. The bible provided much of the source material in Baroque music. So we heard Vivaldi’s Magnificat and Credo, a setting of the Nicene Creed. Then we heard some Mozart, Lotti’s Crucifixus and Pergolesi’s Stabat Mater. The religious music […]

    Baroque – Eye Bach Choir

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  • Brahms in 1866 and Lauridsen in 1977 bought sought in music consolation for their dead mothers. Instead of an orchestra, the German Requiem featured two pianists, Ian Le Grice and Jonathan Rutherford, at one piano. Their contribution was constant and telling. Under Leslie Olive’s direction, the gently welling first chorus would have comforted any bereaved […]

    Brahms Requiem Review in the Diss Express

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  • On Saturday night in Eye Town Hall, an excited audience was brought to its feet by a dynamic performance of Will Todd’s ‘Mass in Blue’. It was given by – yes, the Eye Bach Choir. It is difficult to imagine such a lofty Victorian pile as the venue for an evening of intimate jazz and […]

    Eye Bach Choir Sings the Blues

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  • Rossini’s work Petite Messe Solennelle is not little, solemn or a Mass; but a feast of pleasures. Under Leslie Olive’s direction, Eye Bach Choir seemed to pick up on the benign spirit of the composer. Their Kyrie had a sweet sanctity, holiness with happiness, accompanied by Jonathan Rutherford’s tripping piano. The concert had piano and […]

    Diss Express Review of Petite Messe Solennelle

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  • After our performance of the Petite Messe Solonnelle by Rossini on Saturday 29th November 2014, we received some lovely comments and reviews from our soloists for the evening, as follows: “I very much enjoyed working with you again. It was a pleasure! The Eye Bach Choir is undoubtedly one of the best in the region. […]

    Soloists Reviews from the Petite Messe Solennelle

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  • It is the most extraordinary privilege to find myself conductor of Eye Bach Choir on the occasion of its fortieth anniversary. I have been forming and conducting choirs for longer then that, which tempts me to feel qualified to comment from a breadth of experience on this special choir. So now, after seven years here, […]

    Conductors Review of the Choir in 2014

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  • The splendour of the church formed a perfect setting for Saturday evening’s performance of Bach’s B Minor Mass by Eye Bach Choir. Their numbers alone made this a performance on a grand scale, yet conductor Leslie Olive made it sound authentic, adopting tempi which, for the most part, had a spaciousness which admirably projected the […]

    Performance on a grand scale

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  • About the time of Watergate, Abba’s Waterloo, and the invention of the Rubik’s cube, Eye Bach Choir was born. The warmest and most sustained applause at last week’s concert was for 90 year old founder Merlin Channon, rising from his wheelchair to conduct a Bach chorale. There was much to celebrate, starting with works from […]

    Eye Bach Choir 40th Anniversary

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We rehearse each Friday during the school term from September until May at Eye Primary School next to the church between 7.45 pm. and 9.45 pm, with a sociable coffee in the middle, and refreshments at the pub afterwards. Singing on a Friday night sets us up for the weekend nicely.

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