Birmingham chamber choir Ex Cathedra has commissioned a new piece, combining Jewish and Islamic performers, from pop musician Fyfe Dangerfield.
The choir, whose newly-released CD of Latin-American baroque music, Fire Burning in Snow, was a recent Classic FM CD of the Week, will give the premiere at Birmingham Town Hall next January in a concert which forms part of a multicultural project called "Convivencia".
Borrowing its title from a period in Spanish history when Jews, Muslims and Catholics lived peacefully side-by-side, it will feature Jewish and Islamic musicians performing with Ex Cathedra and joining together for the new Dangerfield piece.
The 27-year-old Birmingham-born leader of pop group Guillemots, which has just achieved its first top-20 success with its new single Get Over It, is a classically-trained pianist but self-taught as a composer.
His orchestral work In Wait was premiered by the City of Birmingham Orchestra last October as part of the celebrations for the reopening of the Town Hall.
He has had a relationship with Ex Cathedra since he was a teenager, having sung with its training choir, The Academy of Vocal Music, and worked on several of its educational projects.
He has already had four pieces performed by the choir, which plans to record a CD of his choral music in the summer of 2010.
The collaboration with Dangerfield - or Fyfe Hutchins as he is still known outside pop circles - is part of an ambitious three-year programme including new commissions and recordings, to celebrate Ex Cathedra's 40th anniversary in 2010.
Renowned Scottish composer James MacMillan has promised a short piece for the Christmas Music by candlelight series, with the possibility of a larger
work to follow, and there will be further commissions from Alec Roth and the American Eric Whitacre, another musician who migrated from rock to choral music.
Ex Cathedra also plans to record the 90-minute oratorio Wings of Faith by Birmingham composer John Joubert, which had its first full performance last year as part of celebrations for the composer's 80th birthday, together with two pieces it commissioned from him in the 1980s.
It also hopes to make a live recording of Elgar's The Dream of Gerontius in the Town Hall. This will be the last in a series of three concerts recreating great events in the history of Birmingham's Triennial Festival.