Harmonious opening to festival

Harmonious opening to festival

The City of Joondalup commissioned Bill McAllister and Carole Macintyre from MacMusiCo to create an original barbershop four-part harmonic arrangement of songs.

Singers of all ages and abilities came together in the community project to perform the arrangement of well-known and loved tunes from Australia and the 1950s.

‘The groundwork is done ” the notes, the words, getting the harmonies right,’ Macintyre said.

‘Now it’s all about enjoying it, putting on a great show for the audience and hopefully encouraging more people to get involved with community choirs.’

McAllister said it had been a challenge to bring everything together in a short time but also exciting.

‘Barbershop is a different style of singing to what many of these singers are used to and there is no music backing, but everyone has been so enthusiastic about it,’ he said.

‘They have been having great fun and have learned the arrangement very quickly. They’ve all done a great job.’

The singers range in experience from members of Perth Harmony Chorus and local barbershop performers to residents with no formal training.

‘We’ve got a couple of young boys aged around 12 and a couple of older men in their late 70s, so it has been a great mix of community,’ Macintyre said.

‘A lady named Jan is sharing this experience with her granddaughter; there are singers of different abilities taking part, and that is what’s so great about this project.’

McAllister said he was excited about seeing everyone’s hard work come to fruition.

‘It is a wonderful concept by the City of Joondalup. Of all the councils I work with, they are the most proactive arts-wise.

‘There is a great vision for the arts. It’s exciting and we are so pleased and so honoured to be involved in this project.’

The Joondalup Festival runs across the weekend, starting from 2pm each day. The choir will perform as part of the festival’s official opening at 6.30pm, which will include the twilight lantern parade that is themed Imagining Australia Larger Than Life.