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Can You Hear the People Singing?

Bali Community Choir: Trying to Teach an Entire Island to Sing.


Bali News: Can You Hear the People Singing?
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(3/6/2010)

Established in September 2009, the Bali Community Choir meets every Tuesday evening at the Gateway Community Center on Jalan Danau Batur Sari No.3 in Sanur (across from the Canang Sari Restaurant on the same street that leads to the Bali International School).

Led and inspired by its volunteer conductor, Brendan O'Donnell, the choir is open without audition to anyone over the age of 18 years with a desire to sing.

Established less than half a year ago, the choir – in terms of sound, size and musical enthusiasm is impressive. A series of informal caroling dates at local hotels in Bali in the week before Christmas were well received and earned valuable visibility for the newly-formed choir which now draws an average of 30-40 people at each rehearsal. The choir's musical tastes are eclectic; ranging effortlessly from the sacred to the profane and everything in between. A recent rehearsal saw O'Donnell taking the choir through their paces singing I Dreamed a Dream (Les Miserables), The Streets of London, Java Jive (The Manhattan Transfer), Hava Nagila, Amazing Grace, Edelweiss, Riu Riu Chiu (15th century Spanish) and a selection of songs sung in barbershop harmony.

Sound fun? Well, that's the intention.

The choir's stated goals are:

• To create a pressure-free environment for anyone wishing to sing to do so.

• To bring together a broad spectrum of members of the expatriate and local Indonesian communities.

• To work towards public performances in order to share our music with neighbors and friends in Bali.

Audition are not necessary and participation is free of charge, although a small weekly donation from members able to do so helps to cover hall rentals and music acquisition costs. In the end, the emphasis is on "community" with members enjoying the fellowship in equal measure with the music.

O'Donnel, a retired music educator and former Director of the internationally acclaimed "Sing Australia," issues the following invitation: "For many years, it has been common knowledge that those people who sing, are likely to enjoy life more; have better health; grow new friendships and generally celebrate being together. This is the aim of The Bali Community Choir and if you are interested in singing, come and join us! You will receive a very warm welcome!"

For more information contact :

• Brendan (English) 081353120682

• Ricky (Indonesian) 081338753327

• Jane (English) 08123870469


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