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Oriana’s Patron meets Choir, Soloists and Conductor at Open Rehearsals

Jocelyn Walker has long been a philanthropist on the Sunshine Coast. She was the creator of the Vic Walker Memorial Scholarship, named for her late husband, who was the Vic of the original Moby Vic’s, on the old Bruce Highway. She is a member of the Foundation Board of the University of the Sunshine Coast. Her generosity towards numerous organisations and individuals on the Coast is legendary.

The Sunshine Coast’s Oriana Choir is indeed fortunate to have Jocelyn as one of its Patrons. She has been an enthusiastic supporter of the choir virtually since its establishment nearly fourteen years ago, coming to as many of Oriana’s concerts as she is able to fit in to her busy schedule. She loves fine choral music, and she recognises that that is what Oriana is all about. She says that she is proud to be able to sponsor and champion the accomplished and internationally acclaimed musical ensemble that Oriana has become.

The choir is in its final stages of preparation for the staging of Felix Mendelssohn’s magnificent oratorio, Elijah, at the Caloundra Events Centre on Saturday May 18 at 7.00 pm, and St. John’s Cathedral, Brisbane on Sunday May 19 at 1.00 pm. With the Brisbane Symphony Orchestra, soloists Daniel Smerdon (as Elijah), Elisabeth Wallis Gaedtke, Anne Fulton and Phillip Prendergast, and conducted by renowned music director Andrew Wailes, Elijah is set to be one of the Sunshine Coast’s musical highlights of 2019.

Andrew Wailes has an enormous amount of experience and expertise in choral music. He is currently Music Director with the Royal Melbourne Philharmonic Choir and Orchestra and the Melbourne University Choral Society, and several other choirs; and he has worked with many leading Australian and international performers, including John Farnham, Josh Groban, Julie Anthony and Michael Buble, to name just a few.

Last Thursday evening, May 2nd, Oriana held an open rehearsal, and around 30 people, including Friends of Oriana, choristers’ friends and family, and other music lovers came along, to see and hear the choir in rehearsal mode. Jocelyn was there, and her enthusiasm for Oriana, and this magnificent choral work, was as evident as ever. And on Friday night, May 10th, Jocelyn again attended an Oriana rehearsal, this time with the soloists and the conductor, Andrew. Jocelyn’s passion for beautiful music, and Oriana, is so deep and heartfelt that she is very generously sponsoring three of the soloists who will be performing in Elijah.

Knowing that Oriana has the active support of someone with Jocelyn’s standing in the Sunshine Coast Community is a tremendous source of encouragement to the choristers. That Jocelyn could fit attendance at two evening choral rehearsals in with all her other commitments, is a measure of the passion she has for Oriana, and a recognition of the passion for musical excellence that she can see in the members of the Oriana choir.

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