DESPITE a wild night of lashing rain, an audience from far and wide packed Paul church for Mousehole Male Voice Choir's Christmas concert on December 21, and what a treat they got for their £5 admission fee.
This very special annual concert is always a major musical event in Penwith, and this year the choir excelled itself with a brilliant programme of traditional Christmas music and Cornish carols, together with new pieces arranged by their musical director, Stephen Lawry. There was some anxiety earlier in the week because the choir's accompanist, Annette Turton, was ill, but she had recovered to turn in a star performance for the occasion.
Proceeds from the Christmas concert go to charity, and this year's beneficiaries are the British Heart Foundation (Penzance branch) and Penzance Sea Cadets.
Since 1942 the cadets have been training youth, regardless of sex, religion and race, in a wide range of seamanship and practical skills.
It was wonderful to see a contingent of uniformed cadets from the training ship Grenville, all so smartly turned out and singing the audience carols lustily. We can be very proud of the achievements of this group of young people from Penzance, Newlyn and surrounding areas who have successfully represented the district in national competitions.
The contrast to the massed ranks of the choir was provided by the solo performance of their guest artiste, Jack Curnow, who crooned popular songs such as White Christmas and Have Yourself A Merry Little Christmas in the Michael Buble style.
Jack is a 20-year-old musician who was previously a pupil at Humphry Davy School and is currently studying for a degree in music at University College, Falmouth.
He knows how to put over a song; tall, slim, and smartly suited, his easy style charmed the audience and had a particular appeal for the ladies.
The evening was a resounding success, putting audience and musicians into Christmas mode to brave the rain and make a dash to the church hall for mince pies and punch.
In very Cornish fashion, the carol singing continued in the crush of the public bar of the King's Arms to finish off a wonderful night of entertainment.