Wanneroo Times - - Lifestyle - Sara Fitz­patrick

MASSED Choir Fes­ti­val con­duc­tor Mirelle Hop­wood says the fes­ti­val aims to chal­lenge chil­dren and teach them how to be mu­si­cians.

Fea­tur­ing 4000 Perth pri­mary school stu­dents from 78 public schools, The Massed Choir Fes­ti­val is the largest cho­ral fes­ti­val in WA. Now in its 23rd year, the former Winthrop Hall event de­buts this week at Perth Con­cert Hall with years 4 to 6 stu­dents per­form­ing across eight nights.

Or­gan­iser Mary-Anne Goy­der, who con­ducts with Hop­wood of Church­lands Se­nior High School, said the fes­ti­val pro­vided chil­dren an ex­pe­ri­ence they would never for­get.

“A lot of kids would never get the op­por­tu­nity to sing in some­thing of such a grand scale as this,” Goy­der said.

“Be­ing in a choir, they have to work to­gether – it’s a huge team ef­fort – and if they don’t pull to­gether, then it doesn’t hap­pen.”

Hop­wood said the fes­ti­val se­lected com­plex works to chal­lenge the young­sters.

“The songs are cho­sen for their ed­u­ca­tional ben­e­fit: we al­ways do a work that’s based on an as­pect of WA’s his­tory, so we tick boxes with the cur­ricu­lum in pri­mary school,” she said.

“The reper­toire has been very care­fully cho­sen to suit young

voices and give them an ed­u­ca­tion­ally sound ex­pe­ri­ence.”

“We have a com­mis­sioned work each year: this year it’s the Car­pet of Sil­ver by Dan Walker, about the Zuyt­dorp ship­wreck off Kal­barri,” Goy­der said.

Pic­tures: An­drew Ritchie

The fes­ti­val brings to­gether 4000 pri­mary stu­dents from 78 public schools. d473829

Mirelle Hop­wood and Mary-Anne Goy­der with stu­dents tak­ing part in the Massed Choir Fes­ti­val.

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