It is a long time since I have heard the Southern Consort of Voices, and today’s recital Ave Maris Stella in St Paul’s Cathedral was the first time I have heard this 21 voice Choir conducted by Daniel Kelly. His programming was imaginative and challenging, both for his singers and his audience.

Kelly maintained a tight control over his singers, with highlights being very sensitive phrasing and excellent dynamic contrasts.

In fact the Consort’s most beautiful sounds were in the soft passages where an excellent choral blend was achieved.

Kelly appeared to have tamed the Cathedral’s overly resonant acoustics with the Choir, as diction was always very clear.

The John Ritchie cameos were a delight, and Kelly’s conducting allowed the music to breathe.

The performance of Grüber’s Stille Nacht for womens’ voices, and expertly accompanied by guitarist Scott Colvin, was exquisite.

The final piece, Ave Maris Stella, showed how well the choir copes with subtle shifts of harmonic language.

This is a choir and a conductor that we should be watching closely in future.