Thursday, April 9, 2015

Lenten Pilgrimage

King's College, Cambridge, England

Choral Evensong at King's

My recent English travels would have been incomplete without hearing this superb choir sing in its own home, King's College Chapel. I never miss the live BBC radio broadcast, "A Festival of Nine Lessons and Carols," on Christmas Eve. The choir is even better in person — 16th century surround sound!

Visiting Cambridge is easy — arrival via express train from London and a taxi to King's Parade. The Chapel's Gothic spires are a beacon in the center of town.

Inside the Chapel, I marveled at the majestic stained glass windows in the morning light, took some incredible photos, walked to "the Backs," then returned for evensong later that day. The Gothic architecture, spectacular; the choir, heavenly.

Begun during the reign of Henry VI in 1446, the Chapel took more than a century to complete. Not surprising, as the entire ceiling is covered with intricate fan vaults and incredible detail throughout. Richard III, the last king of the House of York and recently in the news for his re-burial in Leicester Cathedral in March, 2015, was a generous patron of the Chapel. Henry VII and Henry VIII reigned during the final stages of construction and directed funds toward the church's completion.

"By 1547, the chapel was recognized as one of Europe's finest late medieval buildings. It was in truth a 'work of kings.' " (1)

Thankfully, this sacred space and symbol of English Christianity was spared during wartime. The stained glass windows were removed, stored and reinstalled after WWII.


"Lenten Pilgrimage" is the first in a series of blogs/photo essays about my March, 2015, jaunt "across the pond." England has centuries of wonderfully preserved architecture, fascinating history, art museums, galleries and classical music.

As a designer, I admire great use of color, type and graphics. British graphic design has always been elegant and stylish, and British typefaces are legendary: Baskerville, Caslon, Gill. 

1. From "A Guide to King's College Chapel, Cambridge, by Josephine Warrior, 1994


Britain's Best Buildings episode HERE'A gravity-defying hall of light'


To Allegri Miserere HERE
Humorous "alternate" version (!) HERE


The official college website:
Case study by Pat Dunachie, King's College choral scholar / designer of anniversary logo: READ MORE

Punting on the River Cam. Idyllic.

About our studio
Emilie Pallos Graphic Design creates custom websites, corporate identity and marketing collateral for businesses and organizations — from healthcare and education to the arts. Our work features fine typography and classic design, with a modern twist.

Visit our website to see our work. Then contact Emilie about your creative project: or call (818) 242-9055. 

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Cambridge, in pictures...

"R Woobro" carved this stylish signature (graffiti?) on a Chapel wall.

Sharing a laugh with British bass singer David Thomas. David was a choral scholar at King's, and colleague/friend of conductor Christopher Hogwood.

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