In the early hours of Tuesday, the 22 June, Sanctus Choir were buzzing with excitement and nerves as they loaded onto the bus. Headed towards the Town Hall for the Big Sing Regionals, the major event that Sanctus has been working towards for the year.
After a quick refresh the singers were seated and watched several other high school choirs. A highlight was watching the One Tree hill choir conducted by Ms. Rhodes, the wonderful vocal coach at Sancta Maria. We were impressed by the quality of the other choirs!
After a short interval they were seated again, a bundle of nerves when called to what can be called the ‘mirror room’. Here they waited to be moved to the green room. Still nervous, there were people practicing, while others meditated or prayed, and some just posing for selfies, trying to distract from the fact that time was running out.
In the Green Room the choir quickly ran through the key points of each piece, with last minute corrections and rushed instructions for positions. It was almost time, the singers stood in the long corridor waiting to be let on stage, watching the screen.
Sanctus glided onto stage, graceful like swans, centered without any shuffling, and smiled for the official picture – so far so good! Showtime, first was ‘Gloria in Excelsis’ by Jay Althouse, then ‘Journey of the Kuaka’ by Dianne Rhodes, closing with ‘Cantate Brasilia’ arranged by Roger Emerson. Singing with our eyes firmly planted on Mr. Gibbs, the symphony of voices was delightful!
After our performance we sat back down to watch the last choir, Esquire from One Tree Hill College – an amazing male choir. Then came lunch, the second most awaited part of the day as the singers were given permission to explore the beautiful city and grab a bite in the process.
The drive back was one of relief and preparation for the remainder of the year, with new repertoire already waiting!