The Glory of the Temple Church Choir


Volume Two

The Templars at B.B.C. Savoy Hill, 1928

The Templars' Male Voice Choir

The Templar's Quartet
Left to Right: Norman Stone, tenor 1. John Halford, bass 2. Frank Hastwell, bass 1. A. Capel Dixon, tenor 2.

The Templars' Male Voice Choir evolved from the well-known Templars' Quartet. A. Capel Dixon and Norman Stone (tenors) with Frank Hastwell and John Halford (basses) had all been choristers under Walford Davies at Temple, and later as Gentlemen of the Temple Church Choir.

The professional Quartet broke up in 1924 but Capel Dixon then formed the Templars' Male Voice Choir, training and conducting young former Temple choristers. The choir rehearsed on Friday evenings at Temple and consisted of at least sixteen members forming the four singing parts (T.T.B.B.). At concerts they sang by heart which, with Dick's inspired direction, produced a very high standard of performance. Norman Greenwood, another former chorister and professional pianist, was accompanist when required. Several recitals were given on B.B.C. radio, others at the Goldsmiths' Hall, Temple Concerts, and at Benchers' homes.

After the war, Dick revived the T.M.V.C. until his sudden and untimely death in 1949. It was taken over by his brother George Dixon of the B.B.C. and a member of the Temple Church Choir, then by Reginal Goodchild, a Temple alto, and more recently by David de Warrenne and Ian le Grice, both former Temple choristers. For the recording of The Twelve Days of Christmas, Dr. Thalben-Ball accompanied at the piano.

Audio Samples

A babe lies in the cradle
(Corner, arr. H.W.D./G.T-B.)

Templar's Male Voice Choir
conducted by A. Capel Dixon

Recorded Abby Road Studio One
21 September & 12 October 1948

D/L

Unto us a Boy is born
(Puer nobis nsscitur arr. G.T.B.)

The Templars
directed by George Thalben-Ball

Recorded Abby Road Studio One
2 October 1950

D/L

Capel Dixon conducting The Templars in bombed ruins of the Inner Temple Hall, London during the Second World War.

 

Denis Barthel, Stephen Beet & David Lewer, August 2002

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