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Looking forward to an ‘aural massage’

Restrictions call for innovation, so this weekend the Gisborne Choral Society is offering an extra performance on Saturday night to go along with its regular concert on Sunday.

With audiences limited to 75, the choral society hopes that people will come to the special Saturday night session if they can.

“The choir has a large regular following of people used to the Sunday concerts, and it would be a shame to be turning half of them away,” said conductor and musical director Gavin Maclean.

The concert, Old French Masters, features major choral works by Gounod and Faure, with outstanding guest soloists, and accompaniment by organist Heather Easting.

“The music is thrilling and uplifting, and the matching of the St Andrew's building with the pipe organ and voices always adds up to an aural massage that recordings cannot produce,” said Maclean.

As well as the trio who sang together in the same music in Wellington this year, soprano Catherine Macdonald, tenor Jamie Young and bass-baritone Morgan King, the choir will be joined by Belinda Behle, remembered in Gisborne as Belinda Maclean, for the famous Faure solo Pie Jesu.

Fun fact — St Cecilia is the patron saint of music, and Monday November 22 is St Cecilia Day.

The concerts are on Saturday night at 7pm and Sunday afternoon at 2pm in St Andrew's Church. $20 for pre-sold entry, $25 on the door.

down low: Bass-baritone Morgan King features as a soloist in the Faure Requiem, and the Gounod St Cecilia Mass.
HAUNTING: Belinda Behle will sing the soprano solo Pie Jesu in the Faure Requiem. Pictures supplied
HIGHEST: Gisborne soprano Catherine Macdonald will be among the soloists in the weekend performances of the Gounod St Cecilia Mass and the Faure Requiem.
KEYBOARDS: Playing the organ for both works at the choral society's concerts this weekend is Heather Easting, from Wellington.
HIGHER: Jamie Young from Wellington will sing the tenor soloist role in the Gounod work, and join the choir ranks for the Faure.