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The beat goes on

Ola Gjeilo’s “Sunrise Mass” / Mozart’s “Requiem”

May 15th – Events Centre, Caloundra

May 16th – St John’s Cathedral, Brisbane

The beat goes on

With our performances of Mozart and Gjeilo just under two months away, we seem to be in a pretty healthy state, preparation-wise. As at the most recent rehearsal on March 18th, we have worked through the entire Sunrise Mass, and now have just the Agnus Dei and Lux Aeterna of the Requiem to approach. From then on it’s polish, polish, polish!

Our rehearsal MD, Kim Kirkman, works the choir solidly through two full hours each Thursday evening. One really feels as if one has been working hard, physically and mentally, at the end of a rehearsal. Sometimes there’s a bit of banter about people feeling weary. But the weariness, as my dear Mum would no doubt have said, is ‘a good weariness.’

The weekend of March 5th and 6th included 2 intensive rehearsal sessions with Andrew Wailes, who will be conducting the choir for the concerts in May. He was able to build on the solid foundation that Kim and Fay have prepared, and to bring his own interpretation and ideas into play. Having conducted both works before, many times in the case of Mozart’s Requiem, his knowledge, understanding and experience will ensure a stellar performance from Oriana ‘on the day.’

Andrew has so many anecdotal ‘gems’, from the history of the music, the music itself, and from his own conducting and performance experience. They really ‘fill out’ the works we are rehearsing, giving them context, meaning and significance, and adding so much pleasure to our own experience of learning and appreciating them.

Both Kim and Andrew are consistent in their admonitions to us to keep learning, keep practising, keep taking on board all that they give us in the way of technique – breathing, tone, dynamics – and musicality. Thanks for the encouragement, gentlemen.

It’s been, and continues to be, an intense rehearsal schedule. But, considering the work that has been achieved so far, and the time remaining until the performances, the intensity and the effort look certain to be rewarded with one of Oriana’s best concert series ever.

“All The Real Work

Is Done In The Rehearsal Period”

Donald Pleasance


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