Other English Choirs: Lord Mayor's Boy Players

Figure 1.--King's College, Cambridge, has a noted tradition of choral religious music. King Henry VI founded King's College in 1441 and looked forward to the daily singing of services in the Chapel. The construction of King's College Chapel, one of the most important church buildings in England, took over 100 years, but was finally completed in 1547.

We note a London group named the Lord Mayor's Boy Players. I don't think they were a choir, perhaps more of a theater group. Although we know that they gave choral performances. They performed in historic costumes. The costumes are apparently a relic from Henry V's day. The Players were founed by Sir Richard (Dick) Whittington, Lord Mayor of London. We know the the group was still active in the 1930s. The Vic-Wells London ballet company reported using the Players as extras in their productions during 1934. A London newspaper reported the Players entertaining the visting Vienna Boys Choir (1935). We do not know if this was the first such visit or if the Players returned the visit. Nor do we know if the boys sang together. Here we see a photograph of the boys rehersing Christmas carols at The Hall, Allhallows Lane, in London (figure 1). The photograph was dated 1936. There is a short film of them made by British Pathé. We have, however, not yet seen the film. I am not sure what the current status of the the Players is or even if they still exist. They mave have been a casualty of World War II. Hopefully some of our readers will know more. A British reader writes, "I have done a little research on this group, but can find no reference to them after the World War II." Another Brirish reader tells us, "I would be amazed if they still function. The only ref on Google I have found is an archived report from 1930. I've certainly never heard of them here in London."


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Created: 4:12 PM 4/2/2006
Last updated: 5:09 PM 4/4/2006