Bendigo Chorale

Recent past performances

2018 and rehearsals for our first concert were bolstered by a number of new members.    The concert was again a free event for the public, held at the Bendigo Art Gallery, on 22nd April.   The music show-cased the many genres from our repertoire and the audience were delighted and our new members certainly enjoyed themselves.

May saw another collaboration with Victorian Opera, performing The Magic Pudding.

2017 began in style with the Chorale performing as guests of the Bendigo Symphony Orchestra, singing some of Schubert's Mass in G at the Orchestra's annual Palm Sunday Concert.   After that, practice began in earnest for our major 2017 concert to celebrate 60 years of singing.

On August 6 we again delighted audience members with a short concert as part of the St. Paul's Cathedral Bendigo August Promenade Series.

September 17th saw us venturing to Echuca where we performed a wide variety of music at the Uniting Church.    We look forward to returning in future years.

Chorale's 60th Birthday Concert was on November 4, at the Forest Street Uniting Church, Forest Street, Bendigo.   The concert was a reprise of music, including Vivaldi's Gloria, from the eras of each conductor.   Director - Elena Varshavskaya.  Accompanist - Yuliya Lenard.   Guest artists - Bendigo Youth Choir.    Guest conductors - Rohan Phillips, Glenis Pitson and Lorraine Jones.    Guest accompanist - Elizabeth McIntyre.      Entry was by donation as a gift from the Chorale to our audience members.   

Our year ended with participation in the We Are The World concert at Ulumbarra.

2016 In early March we sang excerpts of the Monash Project for Rotarians at their District Conference at Ulumbarra.   

"Fascinating Rhythm" was next on July 17 - the toe-tapping music of George Gershwin with guests Bendigo Youth Choir and City of Greater Bendigo Brass Band.   Our venue was the newly renovated St. Paul's Cathedral in Bendigo are we had a near capacity audience which was fantastic.     A yummy afternoon tea finished the day.  

Then the annual St. Paul's August Promenade Series with a reprisal of our last concert and some tasters of our next.     

On November 4 & 5 a number of our members joined with Victorian Opera at the Capital Theatre to perform The Pied Piper.      This was great fun and tested our acting skills! 

Our year ended on December 3 with A Twilight Concert of Russian and American music, accompanied by resident pianist Yuliya Lenard. 

The American section featured the rarely heard but exciting Gloria of John K Paine along with songs by George Gershwin.   Guest pianist Irina Cherkasski joined the women of the choir to perform Rachmaninov's lyrical Six Choral Songs scored for piano and treble voices.   

The Rachmaninoff, Galiarda by contemporary Azerbaijani composer Gelset Shaydulova and a Fantasy to Russian Film Music were exciting firsts for Bendigo.

2015 - At the start of the year welcomed new accompanist Yuliya Lenard.    Our first performances were in April as part of the opening celebrations at the Ulumbarra Theatre!    We sang at two events, one as part of a massed choir and the other a concert of our own.   It was wonderful!    Then in August we again took part in the St Paul's August Promenade Series and collaborated with Victorian Opera in a performance of 'Remembrance' at Ulumbarra,  

Our final offering for 2015 on 28 November was Swoon at twilight...French music of Camille Saint Saens; Charles Gounod, Maurice Duruflé and featuring Gabriel Fauré's Requiem magnificently directed by Elena Varshavskaya.   Soloists were Kate Amos and Daniel Carison, Piano Yuliya Lenard, Organ David Castles and a special appearance by Chorale Studio Harmony.     The venue was the newly (nearly!) completed St. Paul's Cathedral, which has undergone extensive renovation. 

Five performances in all made for a wonderful and busy year!  


2014 - May saw the Chorale perform Wagner Choruses under the leadership of Elena Varshavskaya (Bendigo Chorale) and Dr. David Kram (More Than Opera).   This was the first performance with our new accompanist Allison Dullard.   Soloist Alexandra Oke from Melbourne gave the audience a true Wagnerian soprano experience.   She was magnificent!    The Chorale was augmented by singers from the Bendigo community, including a number of voices from Women of Note.    In August we again supported the St. Paul's August Promenade Series with a 45 minute concert in the Anderson Room, rear of St. Paul's hall, Myers Street, Bendigo. The year finished with a concert of music composed by Americans over the last 300 years - it was soulful, meditative and then just to wake everyone up quite rousing!   We even danced!!   Sadly, we farewelled Allison as our accompanist as her 2015 Wednesday nights were no longer available for rehearsal.   

2013 - In May we performed music from the romantic period which included Brahms' Lovesong waltzes.  In August we again took part in the annual St Paul's August Promenade series.    The year ended with Land of Ours at the Capital Theatre, Bendigo, which featured choral music from Australia and the lands that inspired us.   At the end of 2013 we farewelled accompanist Elizabeth McIntyre who had been with us for over 40 years.


2012 - On June 17th we presented a concert titled Ave Maria, featuring settings of Stabat Mater by Josef Rheinberger and Giovanni Pergolesi.  The concert also featured Elizabeth Paton on organ, Jacqui Vine, trumpet, Brenda Kinsella, soprano and Kerrie Bolton, alto.    On July 15, we supported the Melbourne Welsh male voice choir at the Capital Theatre in Bendigo and August 19th found us taking part in the St Paul's Promenade concerts again.  We ended the year collaborating with the Bendigo Youth Choir and organist Elizabeth Paton to present Vivaldi's 'Gloria' and other music of the period.

2011 - During the year we appointed Elena Varshavskaya as Musical Director.  We presented Music for Pleasure in the Boort Anglican Church on April 10th and in Bendigo in May.  On August 7th we sang a concert of Music from Around the World directed by Elena, singing in French, Latin, Russian as well as English. We finished the year with a concert with a touch of Christmas, One for the Heart.

2010 - We performed  a concert of sacred music in Rochester in aid of earthquake victims. We joined the Bendigo Symphony Orchestra and soloists to present a concert performance of Mozart's Magic Flute. In July we sang a programme of opera and musical comedy choruses titled Do You Hear the People Sing? which included Vocal Stagecraft from Girton Grammar School.  We again took part in the August Promenade Series at St Paul's Cathedral. In December we presented a rousing Australian Christmas in Bendigo and Wedderburn.  Our Mavis Webster Award winner this year is Colleen Melton from Girton Grammar School. 


2009 - We appointed Frances Monsbourgh as Musical Director.  We sang Haydn's Mass in time of War with the Bendigo Symphony Orchestra and presented Swing low, Sweet Chariot, a programme of spirituals.  We took part in the St Paul's Cathedral August Promenade Series.  In December our Christmas programme featured Benjamin Britten's Ceremony of Carols with Huw Jones on harp.

? we presented three concerts Tudor Music, Classical Celebrations & Christmas with the Chorale ? with Brass.  Each concert featured a new composition by our then Musical Director, Rohan Phillips.  A splendid mix of modern and classical styles with locals Jenny Gogolin (flute) and John Snowdon (guitar)


2007 ? we celebrated 50 years of making music with concerts including works by Mozart, Handel and Bruckner with orchestra and professional soloists.


2006 ? our concerts included Mozart Coronation Mass and a programme of stirring opera choruses which saw us joined by the Bendigo Youth Choir.


2005 ? we celebrated the 200th anniversary of the battle of Trafalgar with a Nautical Celebration, singing Haydn?s ?Nelson Mass? as well as going on a Musical Grand Tour of Europe.