The hills were alive with the sound of music at St. Patrick’s Church Hall Summer Hill on Sunday 14th of June when six talented singers competed in the 2015 Joan Carden Award semi finals.
The adjudicators for the event were Joan Carden AO, OBE and Christopher Bowen OAM. Both these people have achieved considerable acclaim here and overseas. Joan was one of Australia’s premier operatic sopranos. Christopher is a talented composer and conductor. Most recently his An Australian War Requiem for the 100th anniversary of the outbreak of the Great War was received with great acclaim. Both Miss Carden and Mr Bowen have been responsible over the years for the smooth running of this Award which has helped many young singers along the road to successful careers.
The singers who competed on Sunday were:
Maia Andrews – Soprano
Soonki Park – Baritone
Ashlyn Tymms – Mezzo-soprano
Kaine Hayward – Tenor
Sarah Toth – Soprano
Morgan Balfour – Soprano
All these singers gave fine performances and received encouragement from the adjudicators. Miss Carden’s Master Class, where she worked with the singers to help overcome some small deficiencies was a triumph and provided considerable interest for the audience.
Accompanying three of the singers was Michael Curtain who is well known to the Sydney University Graduate Choir (and most particularly the Chamber Choir) for his sensitive accompanying. When introducing herself, Ashlyn Tymms informed us that ‘Michael and I will perform the following program.’ A lovely thought.
An opportunity to meet the performers over cheese and wine concluded a very rewarding afternoon’s entertainment, and congratulations must go to Grad’s committee on their organisation of the event.
The three finalists—Soonki Park, Ashlyn Tymms and Morgan Balfour—will next perform with the orchestra during our next concert on August 16th. Miss Carden and Mr Bowen will be joined by Mr. Anson Austin OAM to adjudicate for this prestigious event, which offers a $6,000 prize and further opportunities to sing with the choir. The winner will be announced at the end of the concert, and there will also be a People’s Choice prize, voted for by the audience.