The University of Newcastle Chamber Choir
The University of Newcastle Chamber Choir was established in 1995. It includes students and staff of the University along with members of the wider community. All have a love of singing and enjoy performing a challenging and varied repertoire.
The Choir has had enormous success, including numerous wins in national competitions, performances in many of the world’s great cities and venues, and the release of five CDs. The Choir has performed in London’s St Paul’s Cathedral, Westminster Abbey, Canterbury, Winchester and Liverpool Cathedrals, St Asaph Cathedral in Wales, and Notre Dame Cathedral in Paris. The Choir also toured South Korea in 2004 and, most recently, undertook its first tour of the People’s Republic of China in July 2010.
The Choir’s repertoire is wide-ranging, from the Renaissance to the 21st century and includes many Australian works. In 2006 the choir premiered "To Love" by iconic Australian composer Peter Sculthorpe at the National Seniors’ Choral Festival held in Newcastle. Early in 2011 the Choir will release a recording of the complete choral works of Western Australian composer Iain Grandage, several of whose highly evocative works the Choir performed in concert and in competition at the World Choir Games during its tour of China.
In 2006, the Choir won the adult choir section in the national finals of the Australian Broadcasting Corporation Choir of the Year against the best choirs from each State of Australia. The Choir has enjoyed major successes at the McDonald’s Sydney Eisteddfod, including winning the Open Award for Choirs, the City of Sydney Chamber Choir Award, the Australian Choral Award and the John Lamble Australasian Open Choral Championship in 2007 and again in 2010.
In 2008 the Choir won the highly-rating national television program "Battle of the Choirs", catapulting the Choir to national prominence and launching it into a new world of performance style. This took the Choir to a wider audience, offering the opportunity to open up the full range of the choral experience to audiences beyond those used to classical music. As part of its prize the Choir also released the best-selling CD "Battle Cry".
The Choir was proud to represent the University of Newcastle and the City of Newcastle during its tour of the People’s Republic of China in July 2010, and compete in the 6th World Choir Games, held in Shaoxing. The Choir won Gold Diplomas in all three of the sections it entered – winning first place in two sections and third in the other.
The Choir also performed at the Australian Embassy in Beijing, the Beijing Institute of Technology, Huazhong Normal University (Wuhan) and the East China University of Science and Technology (ECUST) in Shanghai. We were also privileged to perform for an invited audience at Beijing’s National Millenium Monument and in Shanghai with the Choir of the Pudong New Area District Government and the ECUST choir.