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Make My Soul to Thrive

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As news of the upcoming Spice Girls musical, Viva Forever, was announced this week; the 5 sopranos at All Saints Fulham Church will be reuniting to sing together in Soprano-only services on Sunday 1st July.

At Choral Evensong, the Sopranos will sing Jesus Christ the Apple Tree from Elizabeth Poston (1905-1987) the 20th century English composer.

Poston studied at the Royal Academy of Music in London. She won a prize from the Academy for her violin sonata, which was subsequently broadcast by the BBC and after her graduation several of her songs were published. Her musical style is said to be influenced by both Peter Warlock and Ralph Vaughan Williams.

Poston composed scores for radio and television productions, collaborating with writers such as CS Lewis and Dylan Thomas. In 1970, she wrote the score for the BBC television production of EM Forster’s Howards End while living in Rooks Nest House near Stevenage, the setting of the novel.

The video is the Choir of Kings College Cambridge singing Jesus Christ the Apple Tree by Elizabeth Poston.

The words are taken from an anonymous poem. It’s thought that it was written by an unknown American, specifically from New England in the 18th century.

Elizabeth Poston (Photograph copyright Margaret Ashby)

1. The tree of life my soul hath seen,
Laden with fruit and always green:
The trees of nature fruitless be
Compared with Christ the apple tree.

2. His beauty doth all things excel:
By faith I know, but ne’er can tell
The glory which I now can see
In Jesus Christ the apple tree.

3. For happiness I long have sought,
And pleasure dearly I have bought:
I missed of all; but now I see
‘Tis found in Christ the apple tree.

4. I’m weary with my former toil,
Here I will sit and rest awhile:
Under the shadow I will be,
Of Jesus Christ the apple tree.

5. This fruit doth make my soul to thrive,
It keeps my dying faith alive;
Which makes my soul in haste to be
With Jesus Christ the apple tree.

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About All Saints Fulham Choir

The All Saints Fulham Church is the home of three choirs. A traditional Parish Choir who sing wide-ranging repertoire which spans nine centuries and tours regularly at home and abroad; a Gospel Choir who sing a mixture of contemporary and traditional gospel styles, and a junior choir for children from Year 3 upwards.

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