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Israel in Egypt concert banner

 

‘Handel understands effect better than any of us; when he chooses, he strikes like a thunderbolt.’

Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart

 

It’s no secret that Auckland Choral enjoys the epic works of Handel; after all, we have sung Messiah since 1856! We open our season with the powerful Israel in Egypt. A precursor to Messiah, the work celebrates the Israelites’ escape by the parting of the Red Sea. In telling this tale, Handel draws on his considerable cache of choral skills with evocative fugues, antiphonal double choirs, thunderous choral homophony; he even portrays leaping frogs through word painting, where music imitates the imagery of the text.

 

It is a privilege to work with so much talent from the university of Auckland. Tonight the University of Auckland Symphony Orchestra accompanies Auckland Choral, along with a fantastic line-up of well-established and young soloists, including Morag Atchison, soprano and Dean Sky-lucas, countertenor.

 

Morag Atchison, Soprano

Madison Nonoa, Soprano

Dilys Fong, Alto

Dean Sky-Lucas, Countertenor

Manase Latu, Tenor

Benson Wilson, Bass

Ben Kubiak, Bass

 

Auckland Choral

University of Auckland Symphony Orchestra

Uwe Grodd, Conductor

 

Tuesday 10 March 8.00pm

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 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!

     

     
  • Alison Miller

    Picture of Alison MillerHi, I’m Alison Miller. I have been singing all my life, as both my parents had good voices, and we followed in their footsteps. I’ve sung in both church and community choirs, but when I was a pupil in the EGGS choir, we sang the third chorus part in St Matthew Passion in the Town Hall with Ray Wilson conducting and I was smitten. Years later when we returned to Auckland, and heard Auckland Choral singing Brubeck’s Light in the Wilderness in 1969, I knew I had to belong to this magnificent choir.. I joined in 1970 as a soprano 1, and have been a member since then, with the first concert being Walton’s Belshazzar’s Feast, with 6 weeks rehearsal time.
    Various committee positions have kept me involved, and I was secretary (in those days - a very basic General Manager) for 7 years, before taking on the Librarian’s position. I was very proud to see our daughter Sandy join Choral while she was still at school, and when I joined the alto line I remember her moral support for me as a new alto. Auckland Choral is my life and the members are my music family, which I am very conscious of every time we perform on stage. Unfortunately I have had to take leave on several occasions because of ill health, but one positive to that is I’ve been in the audience to witness the choir’s great presentations from in front of the stage.

    Away from choir and family, I take a team of handbell ringers who meet each week in East Auckland.

     
  • Rosemarie Brown

    Picture of Rosemarie BrownI think I’ve been singing my entire life and life without singing is a little empty. I’ve sung in choirs since Primary School and with churches. I’ve sung in bands, concerts and on stage. Nowadays I sing in operas,  concerts, and for the last few years with Auckland Choral. I have sung in the US, Canada, with Symphony orchestras in Australia and New Zealand, with opera companies in Australia and New Zealand. There is nothing more magical, inspiring, uplifting and energising than when you are making absolutely beautiful music with the entire team of musicians and giving enjoyment to many, to transport the listeners into their own world of music and fantasy.  For those times where I resonate with the words, the composer or story – then words cannot express that amazingness, but music can!  I have chills by the time I am finished Handel’s Messiah and that is my icing on the cake every year thanks to Auckland Choral.

     
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