Following are brief notes of concerts and repertoire of the choir........
Choral Gems 16 & 16 September
This concert achieved a wonderful balance of voice and repertoire for concerts on 15 & 16 September
2018 under the directorship of Pippa Andrew. A mix from the masters of sacred works was performed
by choir, individual voice and piano. These included Victoria O quam gloriosum est regnum, Bach's
Jesu meine freude and a series of motets by Bruckner and Stanford
Divine Music for Choir and Organ 2018
Presented in May 2018 at St Matthews in Albury. American conductor Jeff Mosher made his debut with
the Murray Conservatorium Choir for two concerts that featured the organ and choir. St Matthews was
the perfect setting for the choir to sing from the loft where the organ combined to provide a sublime
blend of reverberating sound for the audience
Magnificat : Christmas 2017
Three concerts were performed this year in Walla Walla, Albury and Wodonga. Hugh Fullarton led the The Three Choirs Festival
choir in John Rutter's Magnificat and featured soloists and guest instrumentalists on flute and oboe
Our Bill Kell scholarship is shared by siblings Emily and James Strachan who both performed solo
pieces. Audience participation was welcomed on a selection of carols.
Beechworth Singers, Vocal Dimension from Wangaratta and Murray Conservatorium choirs performed
two concerts in early September 2017 accompanied by the Three Choirs Festival Orchestra and led by
guest conductor Jackson Harnwell. Presented were Handels's Coronation Anthems and other works by
Byrd, Laurenen, Whitacre, Labarr and Vaughan Williams.
A Concert of Carols
December 2016 welcomed the audience in two concerts to join in singing well known and loved carols
and music written to celebrate the Christmas season.
Four Weddings and a Funeral
the first concert with Hugh Fullarton in 2016 provided a mix of choir and organ music that celebrated
grand British occasions.
Christmas Fantasia concerts
included wonderful music from traditional Christmas Messiah choruses to Benjamin Britten's setting of
WH Aden poetry. Vaughan Williams' thrilling 'Fantasia on Christmas Carols' was the central gift in this
program spanning 400 years of Christmas music. We continuing a successful collaboration with
talented local instrumentalists in a varied program, including audience participation in well known
Carols. This was the final choir performance directed by Mike Halsey who is departing for England early
in 2016. Feature pieces were by Ralph Vaughan Williams and Benjamin Britton and included some
sing along carols for all to enjoy.
September 2015 - Three Choirs Festival - Beechworth, Wangaratta and Murray Conservatorium choirs.
May 2015 - Animalia , under the directorship of Mike Halsey
was performed at two concerts on 23rd and 24th of May 2015, providing a broad range of musical
styles in songs that celebrated or featured animals.
Of special note was the wonderful performance by Mica Torre and Micaela Schmidt of the comic Cat
Duet by Gioacchino Rossini. Also featured were a number of small ensembles of 10-14 singers
performing songs in a madrigal style. The Con Men bought tears to a few people in a rendition of the
spiritual My Lord What a Morning, and A Dog Walks sung by the Murray Divas was a wonderfully
challenging piece from the Three Japanese Lyrics by Michio Mado with English translation by the
Empress Michiko. Two concerts ended with a harmonic rendition of the Lion Sleeps Tonight arranged
by Alan Billingsley.
Benjamin Britten's St Nicolas
was featured in a regional premiere by the Murray Conservatorium Choir on the 6th December 2015, the
actual day of St Nicolas Feast day. This was one of the Choir’s most dramatic and stunning
performances of recent times. The concert brought together some extraordinary talent from the Albury-
Wodonga region, involving local tenor soloist Robert Boyd, three local boy trebles as the (previously)-
murdered children, full choir, organ, percussion and a string orchestra, under the direction of Mike
Halsey. The trebles involved were Jespah Cropley, Tom Summerfield and Jordyn Moir. Benjamin Britten
was one of the 20th Centurys greatest composers. In the second half of the programme some
traditional carols and some less well known will be presented. Tchaikovsky’s haunting Crown of
Roses, Tavener’s God be with us and John Ross’s A Gaelic Christmas were presented including
traditional carols with rousing participation of the audience
'On the Move'
a musical journey, was the theme for our first concert in 2014 on the 10th and 11th of May under the
directorship of Mike Halsey. Songs featured include 'Come travel with me' by Scott Farthing, 'Walking in
the Air' from the Snowman, and a bracket of jazz . The Divas sand Sail Away and Let me Fly, and the
Con Men performed Ghost Riders in the sky and I Dreamed a Dream. A feature of the concert was
soloist Dan Carberry performing excerpts from 'The Songs of Travel' by Ralf Vaughan Williams
accompanied by Robyn Krowicky. The Geographical Fugue an entirely spoken piece written by Ernst
Toch provided a very different challenge to perform. Other soloists featured in the concert were Mica
Tores, Lyn Moriarty and Kelly Trainer.
2013 Christmas concert Shining NIght
The final concert with Beth Yvisaker as our conductor and provided an enthralling repertoire of
Christmas music. The programme included Mar-Antoine Charpentirer's midnight mass for christmas (a
Baroque 17th century piece). The choir was joined by a string ensemble with Ursula Genaehr and
Angus Johnson on recorder and Robyn Krowicky at the keyboard. Lachlin McIntyre, our Bill Kell scholar
provided a tenor solo singing Ev'ry Valley Shall be Exalted from Handel's Messiah.Other highlights
included the ConMen singing Franz Biebl's Ave Maria and the Murray Divas renditions of well known
carols. John Ross' Gaelic Christmas again delighted the audience.
'Enrichment through Choral Music'
Our August/September concert featured Fauré's Cantique de Jean Racine and Duruflés Requiem with
organ, plus unaccompanied Gregorian chant upon which Duruflé based his music. The organist
Heather Moen Boyd provided an inspiring performance at both Saint Matthews and St Johns.
Songs of the Sea
was performed in June 2013. Repertoire included "Climbing Over Rocky Mountain" and the "Pirates Christmas Bells
Chorus" from Gilbert and Sullivan's Pirates of Penzance; " Under the Sea" from Disney's Little Mermaid;
"There Is Nothin' Like a Dame" and "I'm Gonna Wash That Man Right Outa My Hair" from Rodgers and
Hammerstein's South Pacific. Also included were two songs by Ralph Vaughan Williams and Island
Songs by Australian composer Stephen Leek.
concert 2012 was a wonderful mix of songs for the family to enjoy. The choir delighted with bell like Three Choirs Festival
voices which featured a variety of songs from our male and female choral sections, highlighted with
percussion and string accompaniment.
The three major choirs of the Northeast (Beechworth Singers, Murray Conservatorium Choir and the
Wangaratta Choristers) join to present concerts of music that generally each choir would not be able to
perform on their own. This bi-annual event provides choristers a chance of singing in a group of up to
100 singers! Two concerts were performed, 8th and 9th of September in Albury and Wangaratta. Our
three musical directors supported the choirs to perform a lovely selection of works including:
- Widor/Willcocks - ‘Sing’ - a great arrangement for four part chorus of a dynamic organ work.
Siegfried Franke will be our guest organist.
- Brahms – ‘How lovely is your dwelling place’ from ‘A German Requiem’
- John Ross – ‘Festival Te Deum’. This work was performed some years ago by the Murray
Conservatorium Choir and was greatly enjoyed. A new work, just for this festival!
- Britten - ‘Jubilate Deo’
- Elgar - ‘Lux aeterna’
- Selected works for men’s and women’s voices.
Murray Conservatorium Choir presented the 30th Anniversary Concert in Albury on 12th May 2012.
The programme featured guest artists - baritone Michael Leighton Jones in Vaughan Williams'
Five Mystical Songs and soprano Marilla Homes was featured in Mozart's Laudate Dominum as well as
a wonderful folk song in a capella with the choir and audience joining in the chorus.
A wonderful slide show of memorable photos, newspaper clippings and historical choir programs
provided a reflection for both choir and audience of the scope and range of performances of the choir
over the 30 years. The choir performed various pieces inspired by folk music including an arrangement
of a Scottish folk song 'Wild Mountain Thyme' by choir founder John Ross. The women sang songs of
the down-to-earth matters of life in a small fishing village, and the ConMen entertained with spirituals.
2011 Christmas Tidings
featured the Con Men and the Voices of the Murray - with original and locally arranged carols and songs.
The Gaelic Christmas Carol by John Ross was premiered.
with the Voices of the Murray and the Murray Conservatorium Orchestra were performed over two
concerts in September 2011. The feature included the Mass of the Children (John Rutter) with soprano
soloist Patti Graetz and bass baritone soloist Mike Halsey.
May Celebration 2011
provided listeners with the intricacies of English madrigals, including 'Now is the month of Maying' by
Thomas Morley, the lush melodies and harmonies of Johannes Brahms, including an arrangement of
'Die Mainacht' (the May Night) and light-heartedness of Gilbert & Sullivan, the swing of Bing Crosby and
the power of Billy Joel. Musical Director Beth Ylvisaker Pianist Paul Tasker and the Conservatorium
A celebration in concert with the Community Gospel Choir and performance at the Albury Carols by
The Three Choirs Festival - September 2010
Beechworth Singers , Murray Conservatorium Choir and Wangaratta Choristers were joined by two
pianists and a six-piece percussion ensemble with local and visiting soloists all conducted by Patti
Graetz to present the familiar work of ‘Carmina’ and the soulful ‘Chichester Psalms’. It was a work of
sharply contrasting sections of lyrical beauty alongside dynamic rhythms finishing with the favourite,
‘Zadok the Priest’ chorus.
Music Extravaganza: 20th June 2010.
The choir featured in a music extravaganza and performance with Murray Conservatorium bands,
choirs and orchestral pieces. The choir performed Sondheim! a choral celebration of the music and
lyrics by Stephen Sondheim including exerpts from Comedy Tonight - Into the Woods - Putting it
together - Not While I'm around - Losing My Mind - Send in the Clowns - Company - The Little Things
You Do Together - being Alive. Also performed was Chichester Psalms in three movements by Leonard
ANZAC Salute 2010 concerts occurred in April through the sponsorship of the SS&A Club.
The repertoire was a salute to Australians in various theatres of war and featured military and popular Christmas Extravaganza December 2009 -and performances at
songs from both World Wars.
Faith City Christmas Pageant and the Albury Carols by CandlelightMasterworks from Master Composers - September 2009
This concert featured solists Edwina Dalco (soprana) Nicholas Jones (Tenor) Cameron Lukey Puttin On the Ritz - June 2009
(Baritone) and Stephanie Paech (soprano) and organist Peter Hagen with musical director Patti Graetz.
with the M-Con Jazz Combo - Patti Graetz - Musical Director and Beth Ylvusajer - PianistSpecial performance
♪ Blue Skies – Irving Berlin ♪ Mack the Knife – Kurt Weill ♪ Puttin’ on the Ritz – Irving Berlin
♪ Georgia on My Mind – Hoagy Carmichael ♪ Night and Day – Cole Porter ♪ Stormy Weather – Harold
Arlen ♪ Nice Work if You Can Get it – George Gershwin ♪ A Nightingale Sang in Berkeley Square –
Manning Sherwin ♪ Skylark – Hoagy Carmichael ♪ What a Wonderful World – Weiss & Thiele
♪ Bridge Over Troubled Water – Paul Simon ♪ Bohemian Rhapsody – Queen
♪ Do You Hear the People Sing? – Schonberg ♪ You Raise Me Up – Graham & Lovland
The choir performed a number of pieces on Sunday 5th April at the relaunch of the Murray
Conservatorium. 'Pops at the Bots'. A fantastic night in the Botanic Gardens in Albury with about 3000
attending the event. This free concert was sponsored by the Albury City Council.
Christmas Concert 2008
The Murray Conservatorium Choir and Murray Conservatorium Chamber Orchestra presented a
traditional concert of Christmas favourites featuring Ralph Vaughan Williams Fantasia on Christmas
Carols and included an audience sing-a-long.
Three Choirs Festival: 2008
the glorious music of the Durufle's Requiem, and four sacred motets and pieces by Faure were
performed in September at St Matthews Church in Albury and at the Anglican Cathedral in Wangaratta.
The Murray Conservatorium Choir was joined by the Beechworth Singers and the Wangaratta A MOST InG&S PARADOX May 2008
Choristers to present a major choral work with organ accompaniment in Albury and Wangaratta
Two performances highlighting Murray Conservatorium Choir, Murray Conservatorium Chamber
Orchestra and Soloists. The concerts featured excerpts from: Gilbert and Sullivan's The Mikado, Pirates
of Penzance and HMS Pinafore, favourite opera choruses Aida, Faust, Il Trovatore, Nabucco,
andRodgers & Hammerstein favourites.
Our soloists were:
Jason Campbell, Tenor as Nanki-poo and Frederick
Suzanne Ellis, soloist as Yum-Yum and Mabel,
Leon Walsh, Baritone as the Major General
Love - Lost and Found 23 and 26 August and 2 September 2007
This concert featured Brahms' Liebeslieder (Love song) Waltzes as a centrepiece, this programme was
all about love - lost, found, passionate, unrequited. The most popular theme in secular songwriting
allowed the Choir to an abundance of favourites and a few new songs for the audience to treasure, from
the Renaissance through to the present.December 2016 welcomed the audience in two concerts to join
in singing well known and loved carols and music written to celebrate the Christmas season.