Nicholas Mumby (pictured), founder-conductor of the Oxford Spezzati, has not merely some fine young singers among his group of 24, but also fields an extremely professional-sounding chamber orchestra. All were in fine form at Saturday’s concert at the Wesley Memorial Church, the orchestra rather than the choir benefiting from the church’s pleasantly dry acoustic.

Perhaps neo-Gothic Exeter Chapel (Mumby’s home territory) might have been more suitable for Parry’s Songs of Farewell, one of his last works (1916) in which wartime and personal angst meet in a selection of 17th-century metaphysical poems climaxing in Psalm 39 (Lord, let me know mine end), the whole thing spoilt by the inclusion of a lamentably weak Victorian poem by John Lockhart. But the sopranos managed Lockhart’s last lines as beautifully as Donne’s “Teach me how to repent”, which followed, both leading to a mystical, pianissimo ending.

Finzi’s Clarinet Concerto was a most refreshing contrast, with the orchestra matching the ebullient tone and tempi of Charlotte Woolley, a soloist who also brought out the touches of Mozartian pathos in Finzi’s Adagio, as well as humour in the outer movements. I thought Mumby’s control of orchestral dynamics in this quite difficult music excellent, as it was in the very understated accompaniment to Vaughan Williams’s The Lark Ascending. Here the orchestra well matched the astringent tonal quality of Richard Gratwick’s violin — a most refined version of what is usually too much of an orchestral plum.

Alexander Campkin was present for this performance of his O Nata Lux, written for Neresheim Abbey last year. Apparently Thomas Tallis’s great setting was “in the back of my mind” as he wrote; if so he retains only the spirit of that work in this beautiful, original, deeply moving version.

The concert ended delightfully, with Vaughan Williams’s Serenade to Music giving a chance for a brief solo to most of Mumby’s singers in this rich setting of Lorenzo’s “music of the spheres” speech in The Merchant of Venice. Lovely, and very different, voices, every one.