On the coast

The choir in full voice on the weekend.
The choir in full voice on the weekend.

Forced to return on Sunday night when their Saturday night performance was cancelled because of the rain, they sang an 11-minute arrangement of barbershop hits under the guidance of Bill McAllister and Carole Macintyre, from MacMusiCo.

‘Quite obviously there was some disappointment here (on Saturday) night when the rain came down and we were told that the performance would have to be postponed,’ McAllister said.

‘But it was such an amazing response as everyone rallied together and so many people changed plans to make sure they could get here tonight.’

Macintyre was proud of the choir.

‘It was really exciting and quite emotional to be in front conducting them, to see them holding it all together and being focused on putting in a good performance,’ she said.

McAllister said seeing the audience enthused was very satisfying.

‘We came into this not expecting people to learn an 11-minute piece but everyone did,’ he said.

‘It was a great experience for us too, musically it was fantastic and it was a real community event.’

After the barbershop singing, the festival’s twilight lantern parade moved through city centre streets displaying the theme of Imagining Australia: Larger than Life.

Lanterns included a puppet created by local designer and illustrator Leon Hendroff called Wattle Baby, a giant snake made by the Anchors Youth Holiday Program and a whale shark created by Bec Massey.

‘The conditions would have been perfect for the whale shark to have a swim on Saturday but I was really happy with the response we got after the shift to Sunday,’ Massey said.

Ten schools worked with Massey and fellow artist Lewis Horne during term 1 to create about 530 lanterns.

‘The mood on Saturday night matched the weather and was a little soggy, and unfortunately a couple of schools had to pull out on Sunday, but we still saw a few kids from those schools rocking up to take part,’ Massey said.

‘It was heartwarming to see the turnout on Sunday night, both from the kids with their lanterns and from the people in the crowd that came out as well. Special mention must go to Mater Dei College for their flock of birds, and Leon Hendroff’s been involved for the past few years and always comes up with something special.’