Choral concert puts cadenza on a Covid-affected year for ACAS



A ‘Choir in the Round’ night will end a successful, ‘‘against all odds’’, year for Arrowtown arts, led by the Arrowtown Creative Arts Society (ACAS).

The Christmas season audience will be centrally seated at the Arrowtown Athenaeum Hall tomorrow, with the Southern Soul choir working in a circle around them.

Led by vocalists like Emma Pullar, Margaret O’Hanlon and Natasha Wilson, the choir’s put together a ‘December Special’, including carols and choral arrangements of songs by artists like Lorde, Queen and John Legend.

ACAS chair Paul Rea says the show will be a heart-warming finale to a year again dominated by Covid, which had brought with it setbacks as well as some unexpected ‘‘big breaks’’.

‘‘Many of our New Zealand big names found themselves stranded at home, and ready to go local, if only you could hunt them down,’’ Rea says.

‘‘We got the world’s leading Wagnerian tenor, Simon O’Neill, for one of the finest concerts the town has witnessed; also a garden opera featuring names meant to be away in opera houses overseas; and we had this year’s most talked about Kiwi author, Charlotte Grimshaw.

‘‘Then Auckland’s lockdown arrived in August making any event with national connections impossible — like our Arrowtown Spring Arts Festival.

‘‘But other local arts entrepreneurs stepped into the gap.’’

Tickets for tomorrow’s Choir in the Round, from 6.30pm, cost $55, or $45 for ACAS members, from the Arrowtown Pharmacy, or eventfinda