The North Island Choral Society’s rehearsals are commencing for three “Magnificats” by C.P.E. Bach, Johann Pachelbel and Antonio Vivaldi – all to be sung in one performance at the Christmas concert. There will also be shorter works by Bach and Buxtehude.
Choir members come from all over the Comox Valley and some from neighbouring Campbell River. The choir is joined every year by new singers and often they are new residents to our area. As always, tenors are in demand, as are sopranos. The choir welcomes those of all ages who want to sing classical choral music and there are no auditions to scare you off!
Artistic director Paul Colthorpe (a music teacher in School District 71) has conducted the choir for 20 years and during this time the choir’s capabilities have gone from strength to strength.
Elvera Penner provides through her skilful accompaniment a firm base for the choir’s understanding of the score.
The Magnificat, also known as The Song of Mary, is a hymn or canticle taken from Biblical texts and is usually sung at vespers, a sunset service for Catholic, Anglican and Lutheran liturgies and other denominations.
The text is taken from the Gospel according to St. Luke. It is sung by Mary to her cousin, Elizabeth, who is pregnant with John the Baptist. When Elizabeth praises Mary for her faith, Mary responds with her singing.
C.P.E. Bach wrote his Magnificat in Berlin in 1749 and it is scored in seven movements plus two doxologies. It takes about 40 minutes to perform.
The fall rehearsal sessions start Sept. 8 in anticipation of the two seasonal performances in December. The 60-strong choir rehearses every Tuesday from 7-9 p.m. at Mark Isfeld Secondary School, 1551 Lerwick Rd., Courtenay. Membership is $50 (students $30) for the fall session. New members are always welcome and if you want to sing great classical sacred and secular choral music, come and join the choir.
For more information: northislandchoral.ca