St John’s Smith Square is holding its annual Christmas festival from 13 to 23 December. This year’s event, in its 27th year, will celebrate British performers to mark the end of a patriotic year.

Artistic director Stephen Layton described Britain as ‘a force for excellence, certainly in the fields of choral and early music performance and research.’

Layton will direct Polyphony’s annual performance of Handel’s Messiah and Ex Cathedra will return to open the festival with Christmas Music by Candlelight.  

Artists also set to perform seasonal works at the Christmas festival include The Tallis Scholars, with In Praise of the True Vine; the Grammy-nominated Choir of Trinity College, Cambridge, performing Bach’s Christmas Oratorio; as well as Oxford Baroque, the Brabant Ensemble, The Choir of King’s College London and The Cardinall’s Musik.

To find out more information and to buy tickets, visit


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