Wednesday, June 30, 2010

The Cornelia Connelly School Advanced Women’s Ensemble and Handbell Ensemble perform at Warwick Castle on June 30 at 7 pm

On Wednesday, June 30 at 7 pm, Warwick Castle is the performance venue for the travelers of Cornelia Connelly.
The castle sits on a cliff overlooking a bend in the River Avon. It was built by William the Conqueror in 1068 within or adjacent to the Anglo-Saxon burh of Warwick. It was used as a fortification until the early 17th century, when Sir Fulke Greville converted it to a country house. It was owned by the Greville family, who became earls of Warwick in 1759, until 1978. From 1088, the castle traditionally belonged to the Earl of Warwick, and it served as a symbol of his power. The castle was taken in 1153 by Henry of Anjou, later Henry II. It has been used to hold prisoners, including some from the Battle of Poitiers in the 14th century. Under the ownership of Richard Neville – also known as "Warwick the Kingmaker" – Warwick Castle was used in the 15th century to imprison the English king, Edward IV. Since its construction in the 11th century, the castle has undergone structural changes with additions of towers and redesigned residential buildings. Originally a wooden motte-and-bailey, it was rebuilt in stone in the 12th century. During the Hundred Years War, the facade opposite the town was refortified, resulting in one of the most recognisable examples of 14th century military architecture. In the 17th century the grounds were turned into a garden. The castle's defences were enhanced in the 1640s to prepare the castle for action in the English Civil War. Robert Greville, 2nd Baron Brooke, was a Parliamentarian, and Royalist forces laid siege to the castle. Warwick Castle withstood the siege and was later used to hold prisoners taken by the Parliamentarians. The Tussauds Group purchased Warwick Castle in 1978 and opened it as a tourist attraction.
While there, you will be able to take a look around the grand interiors of the castle, as well as enjoy a tour of the beautiful Victorian Rose Garden or the Peacock Garden. You can even witness the world’s largest siege machine, try armed combat with the Warwick Warriors, or learn the skills of an archer.

Visit the official website (click here) and find out more about the concert venue.

Home away from Home: Hilton Warwick Hotel

During their performance tour 2010 with Incantato Tours, the travelers of Cornelia Connelly will spend June 30-July 1, at the modern 4-star Hilton Warwick Hotel. Warwick is the county town of Warwickshire, England. The town lies upon the River Avon, with a population of 25,434. Hilton Warwick features a restaurant, serving breakfast, lunch, and dinner. Recreational amenities at Hilton Warwick include an indoor pool and a fitness facility. Wake up to this traditional 172sq.ft rooms, in rich, warm tones, with opening windows. High-speed internet access is available.

Welcome to Stratford-upon-Avon on Wednesday, June 30

Stratford-upon-Avon welcomes the Cornelia Connelly travelers on Wednesday, June 30, during their Incantato performance tour 2010.

Stratford-upon-Avon is a market town and civil parish in south Warwickshire, England. It lies on the River Avon, 22 miles south east of Birmingham and 8 miles south west of the county town, Warwick. It is the main town of the District of Stratford-on-Avon, which uses the term "on" to indicate that it covers a much larger area than the town itself. The town is a popular tourist destination owing to its status as birthplace of the playwright and poet William Shakespeare, receiving about three million visitors a year from all over the world.
Stratford has Anglo-Saxon origins, and grew up as a market town in medieval times. The original charters of the town were granted in 1196, making Stratford officially over 800 years old. The name is a fusion of the Old English strǣt, meaning "street", and ford, meaning that a Roman road forded the River Avon at the site of the town. Stratford is also close to the Cotswolds, with Chipping Campden 10 miles to the south. As a major sheep-producing area (William Shakespeare's father, John Shakespeare, bought and sold sheep's wool illegally) the Cotswolds, up until the latter part of the 19th century, regarded Stratford as one of its main centres for the slaughter, marketing, and distribution of sheep and wool. As a consequence Stratford also became a centre for tanning during the 15th-17th centuries. Both the river and the Roman road served as trade routes for the town.
The town is located on the River Avon (afon or avon being a Celtic synonym of "river"), on a bank of which stands the Royal Shakespeare Theatre designed by the English architect Elisabeth Scott and completed in 1932, which is the home of the Royal Shakespeare Company. Other attractions within the town include five houses relating to Shakespeare's life, which are owned and cared for by the Shakespeare Birthplace Trust. These include Hall's Croft (the one-time home of Shakespeare's daughter, Susanna, and her husband Dr. John Hall) and Nash's House, which stands alongside the site of another property, New Place, owned by Shakespeare himself, wherein he died. Near to the town are Anne Hathaway's Cottage at Shottery, the home of Shakespeare's wife's family prior to her marriage, and Mary Arden's House (Palmer's Farm), the family home of his mother. Elsewhere in the district are farms and buildings at Snitterfield, that belonged to the family of Shakespeare's father. At the top end of Waterside is Holy Trinity Church, where Shakespeare was baptized and is buried. Non-Shakespearean attractions include the Stratford Butterfly Farm, which is on the eastern side of the river and the Bancroft Gardens and Stratford Armouries located three miles from the centre of Stratford on Gospel Oak Lane.

The picture and the map are from the official website of the town.

Monday, June 28, 2010

Singing to Heaven - The Cornelia Connelly travelers will perform on June 29 at 1 pm at Great St. Mary’s Church in Cambridge

Under the direction of Brian Dehn, the Cornelia Connelly School Advanced Women’s Ensemble and Handbell Ensemble from Anaheim perform at Great St. Mary’s Church in Cambridge on Tuesday, June 29 at 1 pm. There has been a church on the site since at least 1200 and the present building dates from the late 15th century.
In addition to being a parish church in the Diocese of Ely, it is the University Church for the University of Cambridge. As such it has a minor role in the University's legislation: for example, University Officers must live within 20 miles of Great St Mary's, and undergraduates within three. The church also hosts University Sermons, and houses the University Organ and the University Clock. The latter chimes the Cambridge Chimes which were later used by the clock tower of the Houses of Parliament ("Big Ben").
Many notable sermons have been preached from Great St Mary’s pulpit down the centuries. Many of the great names from the Reformation have addressed the Great St Mary’s congregation including Latimer, Ridley, Bray, etc. The Reformation theologian Martin Bucer was buried in the church, but his body was dug up and burnt during the reign of Queen Mary. However a memorial plaque marks the place of his tomb.
St Mary the Great is unusual in housing two self-contained pipe organs, one for the 'regular' congregation, and the other the 'University Organ'. The latter was originally purchased in 1698, but heavily rebuilt until the current version was completed in 1870. The organ was extensively restored in 1995 resulting in its rededication in January 1996.

Meet the Girls! Exchange with St. Leonard's Mayfield School on Monday, June 28 - Concert at 8:00 PM

The travelers of the Cornelia Connelly School Advanced Women’s Ensemble and Handbell Ensemble get ready for some action and will meet new friends during their Incantato Performance Tour. The students from St. Leonard's Mayfield School will welcome them on Monday, June 28. At 8:00 pm it's time for a special concert in the beautiful medieval chapel where Cornelia Connelly was laid to rest. The singers and chaperones stay overnight in the boarding house. Other travelers will stay at a hotel near the school.

Below is some information on St. Leonard's Mayfield School:

In 1863, on the 26th of May, Mother Cornelia Connelly who found the Society of the Holy Child Jesus (SHCJ) in 1846 would take a group of girls to picnic from the Holy Child school to St. Leonard's-on-Sea to the ruins of the Old Palace of Mayfield. The peacefulness of the countryside and ruins left their mark on Cornelia. Within in weeks the Duchess of Leads purchased the estate and presented it to the religious order. On the 18th of November, 1863 the first mass was said there since the mid-16th Century. They would subsequently being renovations in 1864 on the Old Palace and the ruins of the 14th century hall would be transformed into a church, this only took 14 months. The school started by teaching orphans and it was not until 1872 when the first group of girls was brought over from St. Leonard's to start their academics. It was not until 1953, when St. Leonard's-on-Sea and Mayfield school merged to be St. Leonard's Mayfield. Students remained at St Leonard's up to the age of 13 and then transferred to Mayfield to continue their education to 18. In 1975 the junior school at St Leonard's closed and Mayfield became the school it is today, educating girls from 11 to 18. The links with Holy Child, however, remain strong: three members of the Governing body are nuns and three nuns live in the school grounds, supporting the pastoral work of the Chaplaincy and boarding houses.
There are currently in the region of 425 pupils on roll, organised into Lower School (Years 7 and 8), Middle School (Years 9, 10 and 11) and Sixth Form (Years 12 and 13). The majority of pupils come from homes within a 50km radius of Mayfield, but a number come from further afield, and not only from within Britain: the school has a vibrant international community with girls drawn from Spain, Mexico, Venezuela, Hungary, Germany, Poland, Russia, China, Hong Kong, Nigeria and elsewhere.

Home away from Home: Royal Wells Hotel

Welcome to Mayfield! While the girls are staying at the St. Leonards-Mayfield School on June 28th - 29th, parents are going to enjoy their stay at the Royal Wells Hotel. The Royal Wells Hotel owes it regal title to Queen Victoria, who made frequent visits as a young princess in the early nineteenth century. She later granted the use of her coat of arms, which is displayed at the top of the building. The Royal Wells Hotel has twenty-three luxurious en-suite bedrooms, each individually designed and furnished with antique suites. The hotel has an in-house laundry service and a comprehensive room service menu. All rooms have a telephone, free view television, Broadband Internet access and tea and coffee making facilities.

Sunday, June 27, 2010

The Cornelia Connelly Travelers perform at Farm Street Church of the Immaculate Conception, London, on June 27 at 6:15 pm

On Sunday, June 27 at 6:15 pm, the Cornelia Connelly School Advanced Women’s Ensemble and Handbell Ensemble from Anaheim under the direction of Brian Dehn will perform at Farm Street Church of the Immaculate Conception, London. Here is some information about the beautiful Incantato concert venue:

Farm Street, the Jesuit church in the Mayfair district of London, has a special place in the hearts of many people, Catholics and non-Catholics alike. For over a hundred and fifty years it has served a community drawn to this church by its reputation for spiritual and intellectual vigour. Many have regularly travelled some distance to worship in this church and to seek the help and advice of the succeeding generations of priests who have served here. After Catholic emancipation in 1829, when the position of Catholics in England became easier, a plan was conceived on a bold and imaginative scale for a permanent Jesuit church in London. It showed extraordinary vision and courage on the part of the Superior of the English Jesuits, Fr Randal Lythgoe, to have a church built to seat as many as 900 people.
In the 1840s, the Jesuits first began looking for a location for their London church, they found this site in a quiet back street. (The name derived from Hay Hill Farm which extended in the 18 th century from the present Hill Street eastward across Berkeley Square and beyond). This church was opened in 1849 and it was from the start a place of beauty. There have been changes in the adornment of the building and although it has expanded (through the addition of the side-altars and their chapels) the impact is much the same. Generous benefactors made it possible for Farm Street church to become a gracious and peaceful place in the 19th and 20th century.
From 1849 until 1966 it was simply a Jesuit church, open to the public but not the centre of worship for a parish. Sacraments such as marriage and baptism could not be celebrated in the church and the reputation of Farm Street rested on the pulpit and the confessionals. It became famous for the work of many Jesuit priests whose guidance given to those seeking advice gently led many to embrace the Catholic faith. Since 1966 the church has been at the heart of a parish in the centre of Mayfair. The Jesuit community here has always consisted of Priests and Brothers attached specifically to the church, working in other apostolates or in retirement. The Parish is more than a geographic one, attracting its congregation not only from all over London and its surrounds but visitors from all over the world.
The pictures are from the official website.

Saturday, June 26, 2010

Home away from Home: Hilton Croydon Hotel

The travelers of Cornelia Connelly are going to stay at the 4 star Hilton Croydon hotel during their performance tour 2010 on June 26th-27th. The hotel is located on the outskirts of Croydon, south London. This four-floor building features 168 air-conditioned guestrooms, all of which include 32-inch flat screen televisions and Internet connections. Bathrooms come with showers, hair dryers and complimentary toiletries. Furthermore you have internet access in the rooms. Recreational amenities at Hilton Croydon include a health club and a fitness facility. If you are hungry, there are three options within the hotel: Latitudes Restaurant (buffet and a la carte menus), Latitudes Bar (snacks including steak sandwiches and Greek salad and drinks) and Cafe Cino (drinks, coffee and snacks).

Cornelia Connelly HS Ensembles arrived safely in London

Just a quick note from the Incantato Tour Team that the Connelly Ensembles landed safely in England where they were met by their UK Incantato tour managers Mrs. Mary Taylor and Mrs. Lizette Spencer. First stop on their London orientation tour was Buckingham Palace, a special welcome dinner awaits the group lead by music director Brian Dehn at the Hilton Hotel in Croydon, their home for the next two nights.

Welcome to London!

London is the capital of England and the United Kingdom. It is the UK's largest and most populous metropolitan area and the largest urban zone in the European Union. The Cornelia Connelly singers will arrive in this amazing city on Saturday, June 26.
  • A major settlement for two millennia, its history goes back to its founding by the Romans, who called it Londinium.
  • London is a leading global city being one of the world's largest financial centres.
  • London's influence in politics, finance, education, entertainment, media, fashion, the arts and culture in general contributes to its global position.
  • London hosted the 1908 and 1948 Summer Olympics and will host the 2012 Summer Olympics.
  • London contains four World Heritage Sites: the Tower of London; the historic settlement of Greenwich; the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew; and the site comprising the Palace of Westminster, Westminster Abbey and St. Margaret's Church.
  • Buckingham Palace (picture) is the official London residence of the British monarch. Located in the City of Westminster, the palace is a setting for state occasions and royal hospitality. It has been a rallying point for the British people at times of national rejoicing and crisis.
  • London has a diverse range of peoples, cultures and religions, and more than 300 languages are spoken within its boundaries.
  • In July 2007 it had an official population of 7,556,900 within the boundaries of Greater London, making it the most populous municipality in the European Union.
  • The London Underground network, administered by Transport for London, is the oldest and most extensive underground railway network in the world.

Friday, June 25, 2010

Wishing you safe travels to England and Ireland

Dear Members of the 2010 Cornelia Connelly Performance Tour to Ireland,
We wish you safe travels to Europe. Incantato Tour Managers Lizette Spencer and Liane Sassen will be welcoming you on Saturday, June 26, at London-Heathrow airport.
Enjoy your performance tour, Your Incantato Tours Team

Cornelia Connelly England & Ireland Tour 2010 - Itinerary Update

DAY 1 Friday, June 25
Overnight non-stop flight to London with American Airlines
Your flight leaves at 7:50 pm, please make sure you arrive at the LAX airport at least two hours in advance for check-in.

DAY 2 Saturday, June 26
Welcome to the British Isles
You arrive at 2:15 pm in London-Heathrow, then meet your Incantato Tour Managers Lizette Spencer and Liane Sassen and embark on a panoramic bus tour of London‘s highlights. Enjoy some free time in the city center followed by a welcome-dinner. Overnight stay at the Hotel Hilton Croydon.

DAY 3 Sunday, June 27
London in-Depth - High Mass
See the Buckingham Palace, St. Paul’s Cathedral, the British Museum, the Tower of London with Crown Jewels and many more sights, then continue to the Church of the Immaculate Conception in Farm Street where the Connelly HS ensembles are the featured guest choirs for High Mass at 6:15 pm.

DAY 4 Monday, June 28
In Cornelia Connelly’s Footsteps - Mayfield School Visit & Highlight Concert
Travel back in time as your group visits St. Leonards-Mayfield School, after a lunch stop in the lovely town of Turnbridge Wells. The school is located in the beautiful countryside about an hour outside of London. The Old Palace at Mayfield dates from 1325 and was donated to the Society of the Holy Child and turned into a girls boarding school. Meet with staff and students prior to a special concert in the beautiful medieval chapel (8:00 pm) where Cornelia Connelly was laid to rest. After the concert all guests are hosted to an informal drinks reception. The students and chaperones stay at the school, all other travelers are guests of the Royal Tunbridge Wells Hotel.

DAY 5 Tuesday, June 29
Cambridge Excursion & Concert
A university town since 1209, Cambridge offers a lot to see from the Kings‘ College Chapel to the Margaret Beaufort Institute, a Roman Catholic House of Studies for women specializing in theology, spirituality and leadership for lay ministry. The Connelly HS ensembles will present a lunchtime concert at Great St. Mary’s Church. A special treat will be a „Punt“ (river cruise in traditional boaters).

DAY 6 Wednesday, June 30
Scenic Countryside - Stratford & Candle-lit Castle Concert
Continue to Stratford-upon-Avon which dates back to at least the Roman Times but its appearance today is of a small Tudor market town. Visit Shakespeare’s birthplace, then continue your journey to Warwick Castle for a tour followed by a candle-lit concert in the Great Hall at 7:30 pm. Overnight stay at the Hilton Warwick.

DAY 7 Thursday, July 1
Excursion to Edgbaston
Embark on a full day excursion to nearby Edgbaston for a visit of the Prior School - opened in 1936 by the Sisters of the Holy Child. The Connelly HS Ensembles are invited to participate in today's Arts Day and present a special highlight concert (3:00 pm) to the students, staff and special guests. Afterwards you'll enjoy some time at leisure - maybe for a little recreation at the hotel pool!

DAY 8 Friday, July 2
Dublin Flight and Sightseeing
Depart Birmingham on an early morning flight at 8:10 am to Ireland. After arrival in Dublin, explore some of the many highlights with your Irish guide Barbara Hunter. Overnight stay at the Bewley’s Hotel.

DAY 9 Saturday, July 3
St. Patrick's Cathedral & Trinity College
Guided sightseeing tour of Dublin’s highlights ending at St. Patrick’s Cathedral for a lunchtime concert. Furthermore see the famous Book of Kells, an 8th century illuminated manuscript located inside the Trinity College.

DAY 10 Sunday, July 4
Dublin at leisure & High Mass
Sleep in prior to the group's participation at High Mass at St. Mary's Pro-Cathedral in the heart of Dublin (11 am). Afterwards join the Family Fun & Fitness Day with a 4th July American Theme at the Farmleigh House & Estate.

DAY 11 Monday, July 5
Dublin at leisure - Farewell
Enjoy exploring the Irish Capital city at your own pace under the guidance of your tour managers. In the evening, gather for a fun farewell dinner at The Church restaurant.

DAY 12 Tuesday, July 6
Return to the US
Depart Dublin airport via Chicago to LAX at 10:35 am.