College – Issue 41

MUSIC Chorus of approval for Big Sing

Christ’s College boys can sing. They prove it every week at Congers and Chapel services, and the New Zealand Choral Federation’s Big Sing competition again confirms our choral expertise in 2021. College’s Chapel Choir and Schola Cantorum were singled out for honours in the regional Big Sing competition in July by adjudicator Peter Watts. Had Covid-19 not reappeared, and the lockdown occurred, our boys would have been competing in the South Island Cadenza finals, which were to be held in Timaru in August. The Chapel Choir was also named first reserve choir for the Big Sing National Finale, which was to be held in Christchurch, but was also cancelled. College choirs had to be content with taking regional honours, with the Chapel Choir named best mixed voice choir, and winning the award for the best performance of a classical work, while the Schola Cantorum won the title of best male voice choir. The adjudicator praised both choirs for their innovative programming, their attention to performance detail, strong sense of musicianship and stage presence. College Director of Music Robert Aburn says the students are singing very well this year, performing exceptionally at the regional competition.

“The national standard of choral singing is high, and to be selected as a first reserve choir is an outstanding achievement in itself,” he says. “The strong student leadership, combined with a determination by both choirs to strive for excellence within their challenging repertoire, is a real plus. It is always a challenge for the boys to take ownership of their repertoire and to be able to convey their material to both an audience and a discerning, knowledgeable adjudicator.” He says another choir highlight has been the invitation to sing at St Mary’s Pro-Cathedral with its cathedral choir in the demanding Charles-Marie Widor Mass for double choir and two organs. “Year 11 student Joshua Hooker teamed up with College organist Nicholas Sutcliffe and together they performed this magical work,

Christ’s College Canterbury


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