Orchestra celebrates Christmas in song

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THE Canberra Symphony Orchestra’s inaugural Christmas concert, “A CSO Christmas,” is due to bring a touch of the Northern Hemisphere into Llewellyn Hall this Saturday, December 6, with a mix of modern and traditional Christmas songs performed to full-scale orchestration.

Rachael Beck
Rachael Beck

The concert will feature conductor Timothy Sexton, ARIA Award-winner Rachael Beck, the Woden Valley Youth Choir, and other musical thrills.

The concert will feature the orchestral debut of a Christmas song composed by Canberra composer, Sally Greenaway, who is soon to release a CD through ABC Classics. Greenaway told “Citynews” earlier I the week that it would be “kind of a big deal for me because they very rarely play new music by an Australian composer who is not one of the big 10 names.”

Her Christmas song, “A Touch of Christmas,” is an Australian Christmas carol that celebrates what Christmas means to many Australian children and families. Originally commissioned by the Woden Valley Youth Choir, which will of course be performing the song at the concert, the work has now been re-arranged to suit a large orchestra.

“When re-composing the work for the Canberra Symphony Orchestra, I wanted to evoke the magic and wonderment of Christmas, as well as make full use of the incredible wealth and experience of the players in the Orchestra,” Greenaway said. In her view, the orchestral version would make full use of the colour combinations and power an orchestra brings to the picture. “It certainly sound very filmic in this iteration,” she added.

Cara Bessey
Cara Bessey

The concert will also feature another local guest, 18 year old Lake Ginninderra College student, Cara Bessey, who will perform a duet with featured guest Beck, who chose her during a performance workshop for emerging performers this year and who has described her as “a powerhouse singer and performer.”

“A Touch of Christmas,” Llewellyn Hall, 2:00pm & 7:30pm, Saturday, December 6. Bookings to cso.org.au or 1300 665 915.

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