Choir just cannot keep from singing

St. George’s United Church in Courtenay presents the multi-talented Josephburg Choral Society in a musical evening titled How Can I Keep From Singing?

THE JOSEPHBURG CHORAL SOCIETY sings March 25 at St. George's United Church.

St. George’s United Church in Courtenay presents the multi-talented Josephburg Choral Society in a musical evening titled How Can I Keep From Singing?

It happens March 25 at 7 p.m. at the church at 505-Sixth St. in Courtenay. Proceeds will support St. George’s United Church programs.

The Josephburg Choral is a community group from the greater Edmonton area. They draw people from every walk of life: farming, teaching, police, piano tuning, engineering and everything in between.

The common thread that binds them together is their love of music, and their desire to share this love with each other and the community. Their stated goal is: “to provide music of high quality to people of all ages and backgrounds in the faith and wider communities for the enjoyment of performing, for travel, to meet people, to develop friendships and for personal and family development.”

The society comprises three groups: the Men’s Chorus, Belles in Harmony handbell choir, and the Measure for Measure trio.

The Men’s Chorus started in the farming hamlet of Josephburg, near Edmonton, in 1979. It was just a bunch of guys who just liked to sing together at someone’s house, with the local school band director leading them.

Ironically, none of the men now live in Josephburg but they still use the historic Josephburg Church as their rehearsal venue.  Over the years the chorus has grown in numbers and musical breadth.

The men have sung their repertoire of pop, show tunes, sacred and barbershop music in over 100 communities from Sydney, N.S., to Expo 86 at Vancouver and from the Alberta Peace Country to Phoenix, Ariz.

Belles in Harmony are one of Edmonton’s top handbell choirs, which was added to the men in 1983 as the result of the donation of three octaves of handbells.

Then, as now, quite a few of the Belles are married to the men singers. They got tired of sitting at home while the men went on tour.

They cover the spectrum from sacred music to more contemporary selections.

The Measure For Measure trio, created in 1997, plays and sings an eclectic mix of jazz, roots and folk music. They sing what the men don’t sing and the belles don’t ring.

Admission is $15, Children under 12 are $5. Tickets are available in advance from the St. George’s Church office (250-334-4961), Laughing Oyster Books in Courtenay, and Blue Heron Books in Comox.

— St. George’s United Church


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