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Auckland Choral 100th Hallelujahs Documentary trailer

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!

     

     
  • Traude Leibbrand

    Picture of Traude LeibbrandTraude has been a choral singer since 1998 and she is the immediate past Chair of Auckland Choral. In this role she has been instrumental in updating the way the organisation operates and she has learnt valuable lessons about running a voluntary, community based organisation - something she feels very passionate about.  As a health professional running her own business, she is aware of the many positive effects that choral singing has on one's well-being - physically, mentally and socially. 

    In 2015 she was invited to become a trustee of the Auckland Choral Foundation, a role in which she can continue to actively contribute to develop and nurture choral singing in New Zealand, and Auckland Choral in particular.

     
  • Colleen Elliott

    Picture of Colleen ElliottColleen Elliott joined Auckland Choral in 1999. She comes from a musical background starting with piano at aged 7 which also included being a foundation member of the Whangarei Childrens Choir formed by her Mother in the mid 1950’s. Colleen passed LTCL performers in piano but never completed it as the desire to sing became more the focus and formal vocal training commenced.

    After marrying and raising 3 children over the next 2 decades, singing lessons ceased and all music was put aside until she heard Auckland Choral perform in 1997 at the opening of the newly refurbished Auckland Town Hall. This inspiring performance ultimately led to the courage to audition and acceptance as a singing member. Colleen loves learning the vast range of wonderful new works, the regular vocal coaching given every week, sharing her love of music with others and benefits significantly from the health benefits that singing offers. She has been actively involved as Membership Secretary for NZ Choral Federation for the past 4 years. Vivante Recording, a supporter of Auckland Choral is managed by her husband Larry who records most performances for archive purposes and has engineered two CD’s for Auckland Choral in past years.

     
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