Missa Gaia & Lullabies concert banner

 

‘One of auckland Choral’s most standout performances in 28 years’

John Stevenson, choir member

 

Paul Winter&Paul Halley’s radical Missa Gaia (Earth Mass) for soprano, choir and jazz ensemble published by Pelagos Music

Paul Winter’s radical Missa Gaia (Earth Mass) adeptly combines a variety of genres to create a musical spectacle that appeals to all. Premiered in 1981, it is a 20th century interpretation of the Mass, embracing the many voices of the earth, from jazz to the sounds of wolf, whale and lion. Conductor Brian Law is synonymous with the Missa Gaia and Auckland Choral is very excited to perform this work under his baton.

As an organisation dedicated to New Zealand music, we open this concert with a new commission from New Zealand composer Anthony Ritchie. Anthony is well-known at home and abroad and produces works that are engaging, energetic and beautifully crafted – qualities this new work for soprano, girls’ choir, chorus and organ achieves superbly.

 

Emma Roxburgh, Soprano

Jennine Bailey, Soprano

Auckland Choral

St Cuthbert’s College Song Squad

Junior Black Watch Singers

Brian Law, Conductor

Pipers Sinfonia:

Alison Dunlop, Oboe

Sarah Spence, Cello

Timothy Noon, Organist

Roger Manins, Soprano Saxophone

Olivier Holland, Acoustic Bass

Ron Samson, Drums

Kevin Field, Piano

 

Lullabies was commissioned by The Auckland Choral Society for their 2015 season, and will be premiered on 6th June, in The Holy Trinity Cathedral, with funding from Creative NZ. It is a cycle of six songs, to be performed without a break, to poems by Elena Poletti, a Dunedin-based poet. Lullabies are common to all cultures, and are richly varied in their themes and moods. These six lullabies traverse different perspectives, both adult and child. ‘Shush-a-shush’ has a parent calming her child to sleep through images of the sea and beach. In ‘Little One’ it is gentle rain than lulls the child to sleep. ‘Sounds of Penguins’ makes a comparison between little blue penguins under a house, and children busily preparing for bed. The moonlight, wind, waves and lighthouse all conspire to finally calm them down. In ‘The Nightsingers’ it is the sounds of tree-frogs, ruru (morepork), and cats that accompany the lullaby; they are presented one by one and then are combined in the coda. ‘Beddington’ is a frisky lullaby for children to sing, and including a round and a ‘Monster-Munch-Up’ chant. The final song ‘Hope of my heart’ reflects on a child’s future, and remembers the passing of a sister and child (represented in the song by the childrens’ voices as echoes). All the forces come together in this song, to round off the cycle.

 

Saturday 6 June 7.30pm

Holy Trinity Cathedral

 

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Who we are: Get to know some of our choir members

  • Maria Millar

    Picture of Maria MillarHi! I'm Maria Millar. I'm an Alto 1, and also convener of the Auckland Choral Music Committee. I first joined Auckland Choral in 2015, in time for the Missa Somenis. I come from a musical home, with a Dad who played Organ at church and piano for the local pantomines and performances. Thanks to his influence, I've sung for most of my life. I studied singing with Margaret Medlyn when I lived in Wellington, as well as singing simultaneously with both the Bach Choir and the Orpheus Choir. I was also a performer in two International Festival of the Arts operas: Salome and Madam Butterfly. I lived in Sydney for three years, and stepped away from the predominantly classical choir style, and sang with the gay & lesbian choir, whose repertoire was more contemporary in nature. Then, in 2001 I moved to London, and while there returned to my classical roots and sang with the Wimbledon Choral Society for a number of years. I took a bit of a break from singing when my two children came along, finding it a struggle to juggle full time work and a young family. It was when we finally moved back to NZ in 2014 that I decided it was time to get back into singing. I returned to singing lessons under the tutelage of Claire Martin, and joined the Auckland Choral Society, which was exactly what I was looking for. By day, I work as a marketing researcher and strategist, a job which I've been doing for 20 years, and which has taken me all over the world. When I'm not working or singing, my happy place is in the kitchen. I love to bake - bread, cakes, anything!

     

     
  • Warwick Mitchell

    Picture of Warwick MitchellWarwick brings over thirty years involvement in choral singing and over twenty years in management of choral organisations including Royal Christchurch Musical Society, Christchurch City Choir and over the last 23 years with Auckland Choral.  He is a current singing member and past Chairman of nine years for the group.

    Warwick's business background includes twenty five years as a senior executive specializing in sales and marketing for the Post Haste Limited group.  Warwick joined the board in 2014 with the intent of sharing his extensive experience in choral administration, marketing and fund raising.

     
  • Luis Garcia

    Picture of Luis GarciaOriginally from Leon Mexico, Luis joined Auckland choir in 2013. He is a system engineer with great passion for singing. When he went to listen to the choir practice in an open rehearsal for the first time, he was enchanted by it, and he’s been singing with the choir ever since. His favorite concert has been “Dream of Gerontius” composed by Sir Edward Elgar in 1900. He joined the choir as a Bass and two years later he made the transition to Tenor. 

    Luis first studied overseas in 2005 when he enrolled in an English course at the Australian College of English in Sydney. He’s currently involved in a program by the New Zealand Ministry of Education to upgrade the schools' wireless systems all across the country. Luis is very passionate about music, technology, science, spirituality and meditation.

     
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