By Rae Porter
If you’ve only ever thought of choirs as being something of a staid past-time for retirees, or only reserved for those who can hit the high notes. Then stand aside; The Choir is here to flip those misconceptions on their heads and boot them to the kerb. Originally formed in 2013 by Anne Schaefer, and now led by the interminable Marc Jenkins, this motley ensemble is a big hearted, big voiced cross section of Victoria citizens.
The Choir’s original arrangements of contemporary pop, folk and indie songs mean they’re a favourite sight at events around the city and it’s been another busy year for the group. Summer appearances included Fern Fest, Oaklands Sunset Market and gracing the Cameron Bandshell as part of the City’s Afternoon Concerts in the Park series. They have joined Foxglove on the stage at Butchart Gardens and Islands Folk Fest. Not to mention once again opening up the Main Stage at Rifflandia each afternoon of the
January 27 sees them return to the Alix Goolden Hall for an evening of community, choir and a bit of Bruce Springsteen (to name but one canticle ). Jenkins could not be more excited to return to this dedicated stage, “It feels so, so, so good!” he says, “ I feel very lucky to get to bring these wonderful groups of people onto the best stage for choirs in our city.”
And The Boss is just the tip of this choral iceberg. The January show will also bring about the inaugural public performance of The Chorus. Also directed by Jenkins, this is an eclectic group of vocalists, newly formed due to the overwhelming popularity of The Choir, “With The Chorus, I’ve watched this group from day one,” Jenkins continues, “It is so inspiring to see these people get closer and reach greater heights every week at rehearsal. It gives me such an incredible burst of pride every time.” With a repertoire that also includes Lana del Rey, Beck and U2, the choices in song are particularly heartfelt.
Opening the evening’s concert is, as always, The Mini-Choir (think pint sized vocalists with full sized flair). Also joining the melee will be songwriter/storyteller David P. Smith, and the incredibly talented Vox Humana Chamber Choir with their director Brian Wismath.
Tickets are available now online for just $15 with proceeds benefiting the Inter-Cultural Association of Victoria.