Sweet Music – review

THE IDEA OF NORTH with The Choir of St James'


 ... rehearsing before the concert.

Earlier this month, The Choir of St James’ had the privilege of joining the awe-inspiring The Idea of North in concert, who were performing as part of the St James’ Metamorphosis Concert Series for 2013. TION sing mostly a capella (soprano Sally Cameron, alto Naomi Crellin, tenor Nick Begbie, and bass Andrew Piper) with a bit of vocal percussion thrown in. They have a beautifully distinct sound and style, crossing many musical genres: jazz, folk, gospel, pop, comedy.

Read more: Sweet Music – review

Exclusive Interview with Greta Bradman

What is your favourite work on the Bradman and the Baroque program and why?

That is a tough question! I really love different works for different reasons. That's not meant to be a cop-out! But its the balance of florid and passionate to plaintive and reflective that I love. If I had to pick one.. you really can't go past the Handel aria "what passion cannot music raise and quell" - the gorgeous cello obligato line in the introduction, here played so beautifully by Alistair on organ, along with the message of the work and the melody in the voice.. pretty close to heaven really!

 Did you sing in choirs when you were younger? What influence do you think it had on your love of singing?

Read more: Exclusive Interview with Greta Bradman

Messiah review – Oliver Brett

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Performances of Handel's Messiah are of course very common at this time of year and it is all too easy to go through the motions of performing or attending a performance of this well-loved choral work. For many people it has almost become an Easter tradition, something which has become part of many people's Easter preparations. Just as we may give up chocolate for Lent, attending a performance of Handel's Messiah can almost become a Lenten penance. Lasting about two and a half hours, it can feel as though one is going through the motions of sitting through this well-known music. The music can almost seem too familiar, and contain no surprise, nothing to make us sit on the edge of our seat, just another performance of the Messiah.

Read more: Messiah review – Oliver Brett

Workshop with the Hilliard Ensemble

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As Sydney shifts into an autumnal gear (somewhat forcefully given the recent floods), the city in recent weeks has played host to some of Britain’s finest and world-renowned vocal ensembles including The King’s Singers, The Sixteen, and The Hilliard Ensemble.

Read more: Workshop with the Hilliard Ensemble


Whatever the diet of musicians in Handel’s time, his performers must certainly have had tremendous stamina. ‘Messiah’ as Handel intended, for a chamber sized ensemble is a massive test of endurance, requiring a technique that supports the power of the ‘Hallelujah Chorus’, the coloratura of ‘All we like sheep’ and the hushed sostenuto of ’Since by man came death’. After all this comes the mighty ‘Amen’. When the choristers themselves sing all the solos as well, the performance takes on a serious level of self belief that it can deliver the whole package without calling on specialist soloists.

The Choir and Orchestra of St James’ King Street under the direction of Warren Trevelyan-Jones, with the orchestra led by Brendan Joyce, delivered this chamber version of ‘Messiah’ with aplomb and unquestioned musicianship to a delighted audience.


Singers Needed!

The St James’ Singers, our new parish choir, is looking for new choristers to supplement their ranks. Tenors and basses are particularly welcome!
The choir leads the singing at the 9am Sung Eucharist on a fortnightly basis, singing the psalm and communion motet.

If you miss singing in a choir, used to sing in a choir, have past experiences in choral singing or are new to choral music and want to learn about choral singing within a liturgical context, this is the perfect opportunity for you! Please send your expression of interest to Warren at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or phone him on 8227 1306

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