With lots to sing about

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ADULT choral singing will be a lively affair in the Australian National Eisteddfod Society’s Choirs Division this year.

The Gay and Lesbian Qwire and the Canberra Men’s Choir will participate for the first time, joining other popular ACT groups such as the Canberra Chordsmen and the always-colourful Brindabella Chorus in a musical battle for $20,000 in total prize money.

Last year’s Open Championship winner, Victoria’s Concordis Chamber Choir, will be back to defend its title, but it’s the happy faces of the youthful choristers that will prevail as Canberra groups compete with the hundreds of young singers being bussed in from far afield.

With tough decisions to make, it’s good news that the chief adjudicator is Michael Griffin, a classical pianist-turned music educator now based in Dubai. He’ll be joined for the Open Championships by Debra Shearer-Dirie, a former director of the International Vocal Ensemble at Indiana University and the Northwest Girlchoir in Seattle, who now lectures in music at the University of Queensland.

It’s a two-day marathon. On August 13 there are the 12-years and under (9.30am-2.30pm) and the 19-years and under (6pm) championships, followed on August 14 by the Open Contemporary, Open Sacred, Australia-Britain (noon-3pm) and the Open Popular and Australian Open (6pm) sections.

The Eisteddfod’s Choirs Division is at Llewellyn Hall on August 12-13. Bookings to 132 849 or tickets at the door.

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Helen Musa
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