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Cowichan Consort Orchestra and Choir wrap up season with concert

Will feature work by Norwegian composer, Loreena McKennitt
Longtime Consort member Arthur Underhill hugs his tuba as he waits for the rehearsal to begin. The Cowichan Consort Orchestra and Choir is holding a concert on May 4, 2024. (Submitted photo)

The Cowichan Consort Orchestra and Choir are holding their last concert of the season on May 4 in Duncan.

This last concert of their 32nd season is all about nature, said organizers.

From modern day Norwegian composer Ola Gjeilo’s ‘Sunrise Mass’ to opera favourites, and from a Gaelic lullaby to Canadian Loreena McKennitt’s famous ‘Tango to Evora’ from her Juno award winning album The Visit, are some of the works you will also recognize from movie sound tracks and popular operas.

On the program is Verdi’s ‘Overture to Forza del Destino’, Mascagni’s ‘Intermezzo’ from his one act opera Cavalleria Rusticana, Rutter’s ‘Gaelic Lullaby’, Ron Jeffers’s ‘I have heard Singing’, Beethoven’s choral work ‘Calm Seas and Prosperous Voyage’, Grieg’s ‘Morning’ from his Peer Gynt Suite #1, and several other works.

Born in 1978, Gjeilo is an active Norwegian composer living in New York City. This is a premiere for the Cowichan Valley, of his 21st Century work for choir and strings, ‘The Sunrise Mass’.

“If audience members remember the music of British composer Sir Karl Jenkins performed several times by the Consort, they will enjoy this work with its movements The Spheres, The Sunrise, The City, and Identity,” said concert organizers.

“It is partially influenced by movies and film scores from the past few years that I enjoy dearly,” the composer has said.

Two local singers from the choir, Susan Johnston and Emma Turenne, will sing solos in McKennitt’s ‘Tango to Evora’.

Ryan Qu will accompany two selections on piano for the choir. Pippa Williams will conduct.

Tickets are available at Volume One Book store on Kenneth Street in Duncan, from members, and at the door. All seats are $20.

The show starts at 7:30 p.m. at the Christian Reformed Church at 930 Trunk Rd., in Duncan.