About us

Unaccompanied voices in harmony – about twenty singers – a wide range of modern music, world music, renaissance music, and anything that takes our interest – singing for pleasure, for the social fun, for the technical challenge, and for quality performances: that is the essence of Rudsambee.

Our director is Ian Munro.

We enjoy bringing new surprises to our audiences with each concert. In the past we’ve featured Irish and Syrian/Iraqi folk songs, works by Lauridsen, Whitacre, Britten, Kodály, Sweelinck, Busto, Tormis, Richard Rodgers, Górecki, and much more. In 2019 we concentrated almost exclusively on works by women composers from the 16th to the 21st century, including Isabella Leonarda, Clara Schumann, Amy Beach, Thea Musgrave and our own Sheena Phillips and Frances Cockburn.

We tour occasionally — France, Ireland and the Czech Republic in the last eleven years — and compete rarely, but successfully. In the 2014 Mayo International Choral Festival, we took first prize in the Gaelic/Celtic Language class with Deirdre Moynihan’s arrangement of the well-known Óró sé do bheatha bhaile and Ieuan Wyn‘s recent eisteddfod-medal-winning Cariad, in competition with one Welsh and two Irish choirs.

We enjoy occasional exchange visits with groups of singers from elsewhere – most recently, À travers chants from Cormatin (Burgundy), the Hepton Singers from Hebden Bridge and Voxcetera from London. If you think your group may be compatible in size and style, and you’d enjoy a trip to Edinburgh, then please get in touch.

Recent concerts have been in Rosslyn Chapel, St Mary’s (Haddington), St Giles’ Cathedral, the Scottish National Portrait Gallery and Corstorphine Old Parish Church. In 2018, we sang for American visitors in a series of corporate bookings at Mansfield Traquair and gave an informal concert with a visiting choir from France, in the Chapter House of the (mostly ruinous) abbey on Inchcolm Island.

From time to time, we perform fund-raising concerts for a variety of charities – most recently in 2019 Reverse Rett, a cause which evidently appealed strongly to our audience. Our collecting buckets were filled with over £700, and every penny (plus 20% because of gift-aid) went to Reverse Rett. We took none of it for expenses, and our venue generously waived their fee.

Composition competition: in 2017 we offered a prize of £100 for an original Scottish song. We are very grateful to the composers who submitted entries, and we took great pleasure in adding to our repertoire the winning piece, Martin Neill‘s setting of the lullaby Sleep weel my bairnie (words by Murdoch Maclean), and the runner-up, Chris Hutchings’ After Culloden.

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