bbc blue planet II: live in concert

Polyphonic Voices joined the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra and narrator Joanna Lumley in a presentation of Blue Planet II, with a majestic and moving score by renowned film composer Hans Zimmer.

Saturday 8 and Sunday 9 March 2019
Melbourne Convention & Exhibition Centre

Bushes & Briars

Polyphonic Voices joined the Choir of Trinity College Melbourne in a lush and pastoral program of music by Ralph Vaughan Williams and his contemporaries. Gustav Holst, Gerald Finzi, Charles Villiers Stanford, Herbert Howells, and Ralph Vaughan Williams were all prolific writers for choirs, orchestras, and solo musicians, and their music features regularly in the programming of the world’s top ensembles. The centrepiece of ‘Bushes & Briars’ was Vaughan Williams’ Mass in G minor - a groundbreaking work for unaccompanied double choir and soloists that juxtaposes sinuous Gregorian chant-like lines with blazing choral antiphony, coloured by Vaughan Williams’ signature rich harmonies.

Saturday 12 May 2019
St Andrew’s Church, Brighton
Click here to view the concert program
Watch an excerpt of the dress rehearsal on Facebook

Sunday 13 May 2019
Sacred Heart Cathedral, Bendigo
Click here to view the concert program


To sleep, perchance to dream

“If there are noises in the night, a frighting shadow, flickering light then I surrender unto sleep where clouds of dreams give second sight”
(Sleep, text by Elvis Costello, music by Eric Whitacre),

Polyphonic Voices presents stunning unaccompanied choral music on themes of life, death, nightmares, and dreams. Featuring works by the likes of Ēriks Ešenvalds, Jack Body, Eric Whitacre, Ralph Vaughan Williams, and local composers Daniel Riley, Dan Walker, and Michael Leighton Jones, this meditative and atmospheric program will enchant and delight you in the beautiful setting of Abbotsford Convent's Oratory.

Saturday 20 October 2018
The Oratory, Abbotsford Convent

TALLIS ON TAP

Polyphonic Voices presents its debut performance in Ballarat, in an art gallery, above a hidden basement bar! Grab a warming glass of whisky before the show or at interval and enjoy a selection of music by Tallis, Byrd, and Gjeilo. 

Saturday 7 July 2018
The Lost Ones Basement Gallery, Ballarat and
Sacred Heart Cathedral, Bendigo


AT THE MOVIES

This certainly wasn't your typical choral concert. 

Polyphonic Voices presented a one-night-only magical journey through the decades of motion picture music. Audience members were spell-bound by the harmonies of Disney, brought to the edge of their seats by the mystery and excitement of themes from Mission Impossible and James Bond, reminisced over childhood viewings of The Sound of Music, and tapped their toes to a bit of Grease..

Saturday 23 June 2018
Gasworks Arts Park

PASTORAL MELODIES

Under the Artistic Direction of Richard Gill AO, together Polyphonic Voices and the exquisite and dynamic period instruments of Australia’s world-class Romantic and Classical orchestra, rediscovered the Pastoral Melodies of Mozart, Mendelssohn, Brahms and Beethoven.

Thursday 22 March 2018
Melbourne Recital Centre


songs of mortality

Polyphonic Voices' first performances of 2018 was as part of the National Gallery of Victoria Triennial EXTRA festival in January. The choir performed music by composers such as Allegri, Byrd, Leighton Jones, and Ešenvalds to accompany the premiere of Australian artist Ron Mueck's work Mass, which is intended as a study of mortality and inspired by images of the Cambodian genocide. 

Thousands of visitors came enjoyed performances by Polyphonic Voices over five special evenings in January 2018. The choir also performed at the exclusive NGV Patrons and Media launch in December 2017.

When I return to the room later that night, the Polyphonic Voices chamber choir are singing Amazing Grace in the corner. The crowd is silent, the sopranos soaring, the skulls watching over all. The work itself was astounding enough, but with voices like these it is breathtaking.
— Steph Harmon, The Guardian (25/1/2018)

Deck the Halls

Deck the Halls, the choir's final concert program of 2017, celebrated the festive season with a glorious selection of sacred and secular Christmas music from the past 500 years, from countries such as Argentina, Finland, Germany, France, the USA, UK and Sweden. Interwoven throughout were arrangements or original compositions by young Melbournians Dan Walker, Daniel Riley and Peter Campbell, and a new composition by talented Sydney-based composer Alice Chance. With appropriately-themed drinks and nibbles included in the ticket price, we couldn't have put together a better way to reflect on the year that's been and to begin to entertain the prospect of Christmas and holidays!

1, 2 and 9 December 2017
Wyselaskie Auditorium, Melbourne
St Paul’s Cathedral, Bendigo

Salut Paris!

In its second concert program of 2017, Polyphonic Voices presented Salut Paris! - an all-French program in which the choir was joined by guest organist Thomas Gaynor (USA). Featuring music by Francis Poulenc, Maurice Ravel and Claude Debussy alongside the Messe Salve Regina of contemporary French composer Yves Castagnet, this performance showcased some of the lesser-known musical gems to come out of France over the past two centuries.

Saturday 26 August 2017
Sacred Heart Church, Carlton


Motets at Montsalvat

In its first core-program of 2017, Polyphonic Voices continued to explore the vast repertoire of choral motets with well-known (and not so well-known) selections from throughout the history of Western Art Music. The unique program juxtaposes different settings of the same pieces of text: Eric Whitacre's and Thomas Tomkins' settings of "When David Heard", Olivier Messiaen's and Tomás Luis de Victoria's "O Sacrum Convivium", Samuel Scheidt's and Tarik O'Regan's "Surrexit Christus", Orlando di Lasso's and Francis Poulenc's "Videntes stellam Magi", and Tomás Luis de Victoria's and Andrew Baldwin's "O vos omnes". Of course, an exploration of motets wouldn't be complete without some Johann Sebastian Bach, and the choir will be only too happy to oblige with "Fürchte dich nicht" and "Komm, Jesu, Komm".

20 and 28 May 2017
Barn Gallery, Montsalvat, Melbourne
Sacred Heart Cathedral, Bendigo

The Music of AR Rahman

Described as the world’s most prominent and prolific film composer by Time Magazine, AR Rahman is an Indian composer, singer, songwriter, record producer, musician, and philanthropist. AR Rahman has won two Academy Awards (including for Jai Ho from Slumdog Millionaire for Best Original Song), two Grammy Awards, a BAFTA Award, and a Golden Globe and is one of the highest paid composers of the motion picture industry.

The Music of AR Rahman celebrated his incredible contribution to the world of film music. Led by AR Rahman’s long term collaborator UK Conductor Matt Dunkley, with the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra performing AR Rahman’s compositions. The orchestra will be joined by international guest soloists Navin Iyer on flute and Asad Ali Khan on sitar, as well as vocal soloists and Polyphonic Voices. AR Rahman himself featured as a Special Guest - his only appearance in Australia.

Saturday 16 February 2017,
Sydney Myer Music Bowl


Requiem

Polyphonic Voices joined forces in November with the internationally award-­winning Adelaide Chamber Singers, with combined vocal forces totalling more than 40 singers.

In Melbourne, the choirs were accompanied by St Paul’s Cathedral organist Lachlan Redd, as well as a chamber orchestra led by violinist Sarah Curro. The Melbourne performance featured vocal soloists Suzanne Shakespeare (Soprano) and Nick Dinopoulos (Bass-­‐Baritone), whilst the Bendigo and Adelaide performances featured soloists drawn from the choir.

Polyphonic Voices and the Adelaide Chamber Singers also presented their own selections of unaccompanied choral music, including works by William Byrd, Herbert Howells, Giuseppe Verdi, and Australian composers Daniel Brinsmead and Paul Stanhope.

The collaboration received critical acclaim including a review from Graham Strahle in The Australian. The Melbourne performance was recorded by 3MBS for later broadcast.

12, 13, 19 and 20 November 2016,
St Paul’s Cathedral Melbourne (1), Sacred Heart Cathedral Bendigo (1), and St Peter’s Cathedral Adelaide (2)

Cabaret!

Polyphonic Voices was joined by two very appreciative audiences for matinée and evening performances of Cabaret! at The Melba Spiegeltent. The wild winter weather was soon forgotten, as the choir performed three toe-tapping sets of music featuring show tunes, jazz standards and pop covers, in the process paying homage to the vocal groups whose arrangements contributed to the music's popularity, including The Andrews Sisters, The King's Singers, Jones 'n' Co, and The Manhattan Transfer. The choir was very lucky to be joined by drummer Evan Pritchard and bassist Tom Flenady, who along with conductor Michael Fulcher on the keyboard provided a wonderful backing throughout the evening.

Saturday 30 July 2016
The Melba Spiegeltent, Collingwood


Beneath the Stars

Polyphonic Voices kicked off its 2016 concert season with a performance in Bendigo's Sacred Heart Cathedral on a cold and blustery Saturday evening. The appreciative audience were treated to a program of ethereal music perfectly suited to the space, with pieces by composers such as Eric Whitacre, Eriks Esenvalds, Ola Gjeilo, John Tavener & David Bowie.

Polyphonic Voices' second performance of its Beneath the Stars program was at the Melbourne Planetarium at Scienceworks, where the choir collaborated with the renowned astronomer and projection artist Dr Tanya Hill to produce a truly unique aural and visual spectacle. Performing to a sold-out venue, the choir sang the same program of music as they did the previous week in Bendigo, but paired each piece of music with live projections and animations of the night sky. The audience, who were fully-reclined for the duration, spoke incredibly highly of the experience at the conclusion of the performance. 

Click here to view a copy of the concert program.

Saturday 30 April 2016, Sacred Heart Cathedral, Bendigo
Friday 6 May 2016, Melbourne Planetarium at Scienceworks Museum

The Hilltop Hoods

Featuring the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra & Polyphonic Voices

Australian hip-hop group the Hilltop Hoods collaborated with state symphony orchestras and local choirs for The Restrung Tour with performances in Brisbane, Sydney, Melbourne, Adelaide & Perth. The tour featured music from their latest album ‘Drinking From The Sun, Walking Under Stars Restrung’ along with hits from earlier years.

Special guest on the national tour was London-born, rural Ireland- raised singing star Maverick Sabre, who has already collaborated with the Hilltop Hoods on hits ‘Won’t Let You Down’ & ‘Live and Let Go’. Also performing with the Hilltop Hoods, and conducting each local orchestra and choir was New Zealand born conductor Hamish McKeich.

The Melbourne show in a sold-out Rod Laver arena featured the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra and the ladies of Polyphonic Voices.

Saturday 23 April 2016,
Rod Laver Arena, Melbourne


Motets in the Gaol 

NED KELLY WOULD HAVE SWOONED AT THIS.... Melbourne’s best young chamber choir went to gaol!

On Saturday 24 October at 7:30 pm, the twenty-voice Polyphonic Voices voluntarily became guests of Her Majesty at the Old Melbourne Gaol for a fabulous concert called Motets in Gaol.

The walls have rarely resonated with beautiful sounds, but that all changed when Polyphonic Voices performed some of the most beautiful choral music ever written. The grimy bluestone walls of the cells and corridors resonated with a programme of fabulous motets featuring two of Bach’s six great motets – Der Geist hilft unser Schwachheit auf (BWV 226) and Singet dem Herr nein Neues Lied (BWV 225). Also featured was a performance of the famous Allegri Miserere, with its beautiful ethereal treble solo. 

Classic Melbourne attended and reviewed the concert. Read the full review here. 

Saturday 17 October 2015, Sacred Heart Cathedral, Bendigo
Saturday 24 October 2015, Old Melbourne Gaol

American Songbook

American Songbook was a cocktail evening featuring classics from the golden era of the Broadway musical, including songs by George Gershwin, Cole Porter, Irving Berlin & Jerome Kern. The group mastered a number exciting and new arrangements of these well-loved tunes in a program that went off with a bang.

Polyphonic Voices was joined by a smooth trio including artistic director and jazz-piano extraordinaire, Michael Fulcher, on the keys, Tom Flenady on Bass and one of our own singers, Tom Baldwin, on the drums.

In the contemporary warehouse under dimmed lights, and with a cocktail in hand, over 250 guests had an evening transporting them to a 1920's uptown Manhattan jazz-club. 

From red carpet entry to the last encore, this was a night to remember. 

Friday 21 August 2015
Revolt Production Studios, Kensington (Melbourne


Northern Lights


Polyphonic Voices painted the sounds of the Aurora Borealis onto the vast white walls of ACCA’s Grand Gallery. This resonant space providing the ideal musical setting for the eerie melodies and shimmering harmonies of traditional lullabies and folksongs of the region.

The group was joined by Katherine Taylor, first violinist with the MSO, and renowned cellist Paul Ghica for ‘Plainscapes’ - a Pēteris Vasks work of stunning and tranquil beauty. ‘Northern Lights’ by Eriks Ešenvalds saw power chimes and water-tuned glasses (Rob Cossom and Lara Wilson) added to a musical soundscape that reaches 10-part choral harmonies throughout the concert. The concert also included works by Gjeilo, Mäntyjärvi and Rautavaara.

Melbourne artist, Fiona Valentine, collaborated with the group for Northern Lights by painting, live at the event, a visual reaction to the sounds filling the gallery. Her finished painting was auctioned following the concert, with proceeds donated to the Lazarus Centre charity.

Saturday 24 May 2015
Australian Centre for Contemporary Arts

Southern Stars 

This was the first concert in our 2015 concert series Poles Apart, in which we feature music from opposite sides of the globe. The program was a special undertaking featuring music from Australia and New Zealand commemorating Gallipoli and the ANZACs. All of the music was written by living composers, the concomitant challenges relished by the talented singers of Polyphonic Voices. As is true to our name, much of the music is written for eight or more parts and many with solos as well. 

Composers included Matthew Orlovich, Andrew Baldwin, Anthony Ritchie, Phillip Gearing & Peter Leech.

Sunday 22 March 2015
Christ Church South Yarra



Magnificat!

Polyphonic Voices concluded their inaugural season with a festive collaboration of extraordinary talent from across Australia and New Zealand to mark the beginning of Advent and the ANZAC Centenary commemoration.

Magnificat!  featured J.S. Bach’s celebrated work Magnificat in E-flat (BWV243a) directed by Michael Fulcher, performed in collaboration with Voices New Zealand, Melbourne Polyphonic Players and Australian Baroque Brass. The choirs were joined by soloists Siobhan Stagg, Emma Muir-Smith, Michael Petruccelli and Michael Leighton Jones. Preceding the Bach, an evocative collection of settings of the Magnificat and other Marian texts were presented by each choir individually and together.

The concert was reviewed by Peter Williams of Classic Melbourne. You can read the review here.

15 November 2014
St Paul’s Cathedral Melbourne

A Midwinter Christmas

Polyphonic Voices presented a heart-warming program to thaw the bleakest of midwinter nights. Accompanied by mulled wine and wintery treats, A Midwinter Christmas, located in the beautiful Chapter House showcased some of the very best choral repertoire of the festive season, often unperformed in a Southern-Hemisphere Christmas.

About the concert Patron of Polyphonic Voices, Dr Avril Brereton wrote:
“Polyphonic Voices are warming us tonight in the midst of our Australian winter with a varied and interesting program of Christmas music. We will hear, and join in singing, well-known carols, but this thoughtful program also reminds us that Christmas is a time that brings people together around the world to celebrate. To that end we will hear carols sung in German, French, Latin, and also a selection of American music that celebrates the fun of the festive season. The concert is another opportunity to hear outstanding performers sing under the direction of Michael Fulcher. Enjoy!”

Friday 8 August 2014
Chapter House, Melbourne


Songs of Farewell

"Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends"

The inaugural concert of Polyphonic voices, marking 100 years since the beginning of the Great War, through six themes: ANZAC spirit, De profundis, Lament, Visions of Heaven, In Paradise and Epitaph. The evocative program took the audience on a musical journey – a journey inviting us to reflect more deeply on the sacrifice and cost of the Great War in particular, and wars and conflicts throughout the ages.

Featured composers included: Duruflé, Fauré, Howells, Morley, Pärt, Tavener and Parry

Songs of Farewell was repeated in Castlemaine at Christ Church Castlemaine on Saturday 20 September 2014.

Friday 16 May 2014
The Chapel of Trinity College, Melbourne

Gloria in excelsis Deo: Music & the feast of Christmas

As part of the Melbourne Recital Centre's Musical Explorations series in 2013, the brand new group Polyphonic Voices provided the musical examples for a lecture presented by Dr Sue Cole.

This lecture examined some of the masterpieces of the sacred choral repertoire composed for the Christmas season. It explored various national traditions of Christmas music from the medieval English carol to contemporary compositions.

Following the performance, Kirsten Siddle, Director of Programming and Presenter Services at Melbourne Recital Centre said "We were delighted to have Polyphonic Voices included in the event as their energetic and very musical performance added an extra depth to the evening that the audience clearly enjoyed..."

Tuesday 3 December 2013
The Salon, Melbourne Recital Centre