Choral Works Last Night at the Proms

The region’s youngest and most accomplished classical chamber choir brings the Last

Night at the Proms tradition to Collingwood this May with a stunning concert program which the thirty singers and professional symphonic orchestra members will present in the town’s only space that can double as a concert hall – the New Life Church on Tracey Lane.

Following its sold out Christmas concert, which featured the beautiful Vivaldi Gloria

and some terrific seasonal tunes, ChoralWorks this spring turns its attention to the Mass in G of the eighteen year old Franz Schubert as the featured work of Last Night at the Proms. The evening will kick off with the stirring and well known Coronation Anthem Zadok the Priest , by Handel, which has been used at every coronation for the past two hundred and ninety-one years. Other works on the programme include the Sibelius setting of Be Still, My Soul based on the Finlandia hymn which doubles as the unofficial Finnish national anthem; one of those tuneful melodies that can easily become an ear-worm.

Anyone old enough to remember the movie Rosemary’s Baby will recall the trancelike

opening movement of Carmina Burana by Carl Orff with its bombastic timpani and mesmerizing lyrics based on profane German poetry handed down from monks of the mediaeval period.

Also included in the evening’s performance is Morten Lauridsen thought provoking Sure on this Shining Night; A French traditional piece with origins in Québec and France, J’entends le moulin (I hear the windmill); a moving arrangement of Rodgers and Hammerstein’s You’ll Never Walk Alone and Climb Every Mountain from Carousel and Sound of Music; and the Last Night at the Proms must-have, Land of Hope and Glory by Elgar, as it is done in London’s Royal Albert Hall every summer in a BBC sponsored series of standing room only concerts.

The ChoralWorks orchestra (the finest of classical string players, plus trumpet and

percussion and Joshua Tamayo on piano) joins the ChoralWorks singers and together they are entirely under the expert direction of Brian Rae who for many years was choral director atToronto’s St Michael’s Choir School and organist at the cathedral before ‘retiring’ to Collingwood. The choir has already decided, due to the great success of Messiah three years ago, to give two performances of Messiah in the run up to Christmas (Nov. 30 & Dec. 1) and following that, things are in the works for the choir to be part of a ground-breaking film documentary. Nothing’s final and the details are still hush hush.

The next chance to see and hear ChoralWorks in action is at 7:30 Saturday May 5 at New Life.

Tickets for Last Night at the Proms are available online at choralworks.ca.or telephone 705 888 4454

Tickets for next Christmas go on sale online October 1.