Singers concert is ‘how Christmas should sound’

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Banchory Town Hall rang with both traditional and popular Christmas music on Saturday, December 10, as Banchory Singers performed two seasonal concerts, writes Sharon Kirk.

As we have come to expect from Banchory Singers, it was a colourful concert with a mix of both warmly expressive and energetic Christmas songs. It is evident that Musical Director, Tara Leiper knows how to inspire the choir to get the best from them. This was apparent when they performed the serene and lovely Benedictus by Jenkins and a short while later gave an animated rendition of Leontovich’s Ring Christmas Bells. The Singers were obviously enjoying every moment of the concert as much as the audience. This was particularly clear in Tara’s own fun arrangement of Jingle Bells and Christmas Bell Round. The accompanist Shona Elliot’s musical skills contributed tremendously to the concert and her dexterity was able to shine when she joined Tara for Festive Piano Duets by P Wedgewood. The choir provided excellent entertainment, particularly those members who rose to the challenge of performing as part of a duet or a soloist. Soloists and duettists were Ann Blake, Fiona Maclean, Val Bridger, Maura Ross, Cathy Taylor and a wonderful solo from Janice Muchowski of ‘O Holy Night’ with the resounding chorus from the choir which sent shivers down many spines. Throughout the evening there was also scope for audience participation with some well-known Christmas items such as Deck the Hall and O Come all ye faithful, which Tara cajoled everyone to join in with gusto. It was a hugely enjoyable concert and how Christmas should sound. If you were not feeling festive before entering the Town Hall, you were guaranteed to leave humming a seasonal number.