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Being performed for the ninety-ninth consecutive year, Auckland Choral’s Messiah is an annual institution dedicated to Christmas, to Handel, and to some of the most famous music in the world. Just think of the “Hallelujah Chorus”, “The Trumpet Shall Sound”, or “For Unto Us a Child is Born” and immediately the whole musical celebration comes alive before your very ears. Join us again for what amounts to a joyful choral benediction at the end of another year. There is no better way to get into the spirit of Christmas.

Lauren Armishaw Soprano

Elisabeth Harris Mezzo-soprano

Robert Macfarlane Tenor

Joel Amosa Bass

Auckland Choral

Pipers Sinfonia

Uwe Grodd Conductor

 

Monday 18 December 7.30pm

Tuesday 19 December 7.30pm

Auckland Town Hall

 

$42–95, concessions available

 

 

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

  • Sandy Bulmer

    Picture of Sandy BulmerLike so many contraltos, I first got put in the alto section as a school girl because I could read music and manage to sing a line of harmony. I joined Auckland Choral when I was in high school and now I’ve been a member for 40 years! I started singing with my mum as a toddler, sitting on her knee while she played the piano and sang soprano and tenor Messiah arias. I used to come to Auckland Choral’s Saturday dress rehearsals in the Town Hall and follow the score in my early teenage years, and it was a natural step to join Mum in the choir when I was 15. I remember Choral Hall in Airedale Street where we used to meet (before Mayoral Drive was built). It was a dusty old building and freezing in winter, but the ladies in the alto section were very kind to me and welcomed me into the back row. Nothing really changes in that respect; the Auckland Choral altos today are a great bunch of people as well!

     
  • 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 Solemnis. 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!

     

     
  • Brian Millar

    Picture of Brian MillarBrian Millar (life member) joined the choir in 1978 in time for ‘Messiah’, after starting his choral singing in an all-male church choir, followed by what was the Te Atatu (now Waitakere) Men’s Choir. Brian was on the Auckland Choral committee for several years, and for a while shared the role of co-deputy conductor with David Hamilton. He left the choir about 33 years later, to concentrate on leading his church choir; but continues to actively promote Auckland Choral. He rejoined the choir as a “one-off” to sing in the Mendelssohn ‘Lobegesang’ in October 2016, after being denied the chance to sing it in 1985 (long story! Read about it in ‘Hallelujahs and History,’ the choir’s official history). Two things stand out for Brian through all those years – the diversity of music sung during that time; and the camaraderie that goes with choral singing. Especially on choir trips, having sung with the choir in such places as Kerikeri, Tauranga, Napier (the Cathedral, on Guy Fawkes night; with sky rockets soaring past the large round coloured window there being a distraction!), and Wellington; and on tour with the choir in 2005 when they sang in Christchurch (pre-quake in their Town Hall), Greymouth, Wanaka, and Dunedin.

     
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