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A ‘hit’ from its first performance in Dublin in 1742, Handel’s Messiah is performed by choral groups large and small around the globe every year and remains the most popular oratorio of all time. Whether you are hearing it for the first time or for the fiftieth time, the work never fails to move its audience as it retells the most famous story of all time.

Christmas isn’t Christmas without Auckland Choral’s Messiah under the baton of the effervescent Uwe Grodd.

 

 

Marlena Devoe, Soprano

Wendy Dawn Thompson, Mezzo-Soprano

David Hamilton, Tenor

Martin Snell, Bass

Auckland Choral

Pipers Sinfonia

Uwe Grodd, Conductor

 

Our Messiah Soprano just got a super award: Marlena Devoe: Bel Canto prizewinners

 

Monday 14 December & Tuesday 15 December, 7.30pm

 

 

Auckland Town Hall

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

  • Picture of Tom BishopTom Bishop was born in Australia, but has spent more than half of the time since out of it. He started choral singing at the age of nine in the fourth grade, where his teacher, a tall, elegant “confirmed bachelor” embraced new methods of education, which mostly consisted of allowing the class to run wild, but managed somehow to hold onto the idea of discipline enough to conduct the School Choir. In addition to singing, he also mangled the clarinet. Since then he has sung in high school, at University, at work, for work, in his spare time, and in less likely venues such as showers, streets and supermarkets, sometimes to the amazement and annoyance of partners, his children, and random passers-by. More formally, he has sung with the Yale Glee Club, the Cleveland Orchestra Chorus, and the Cleveland Early Music Singers, and has been fortunate to work with conductors such as Fenno Heath, Robert Shaw, Pierre Boulez, Richard Hickox, Simon Rattle, and Christoph von Dohnanyi, as well as Uwe Grodd. In his non-singing time, he teaches at the University of Auckland, where he lectures principally on Shakespeare and Drama. He is pleased to be a Tenor 1 because it means he gets a break at auditions.

     
  • Picture of Rachel HarrisonI am originally from the UK where I studied music. After a few years in London working in Orchestral Management the call of the sea became strong and I spent the next few years yachting. During my time in the Pacific I ended up sailing to New Zealand where I decided to step ashore and have called New Zealand home for just over 9 years. 

    During my time at sea I missed my music, but my clarinet playing days were long gone. I decided I would give singing a try, even though I was a little nervous of my abilities, so I approached Auckland Choral. As soon as I attended my first rehearsal I realised this is what I had been missing and have been a member of Auckland Choral ever since. Auckland Choral became a family to me, and I passionately supported it by being on the Management Committee for several years until May 2016, including Convener of the Music Committee. I love my Wednesday night rehearsals and being able to perform magical works in fabulous venues with friends!

     
  • 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.

     
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