Counterpoint Choir members Cynthia Markson, Sandra de Souza, Liz Kersey, and Diane Katz let music inspire them. Counterpoint Choir presents Music Leads the Way at Knox Presbyterian Church Jan. 19-20. (Bob Kersey photo)

Choral performance lets music lead the way

Counterpoint Choir presents two concerts at Vernon's Knox Presbyterian Church, Jan. 19 and 20

Devon Muhlert

For The Morning Star

Counterpoint Choir’s first concerts of the new year are called Music Leads the Way.

The title is taken from one of the pieces to be performed, and delivers lofty words in a world that seems in disarray. The lyrics are inspirational. “Let us celebrate the things that last forever. Peace and Love will conquer hate and strife, and we will sing together side by side.”

And Counterpoint will.

Written by a woman in 2013, Laura Farnell used a poem by Henry van Dyke when she sensed a resurgence of the ’60s peace movement. The repertoire follows that lead, with some B.C. composers offering different cultural contexts.

The Gift is by Russell Wallace, member of the Lil’wat Nation, who has written many songs. “The lyrics in this song are not words in any language, but they are based on Aborginal vocables from the western part of North America,” he said.

Yabban, Yamman is by Rupert Lang, music director of Christ Church Cathedral in Vancouver. Commissioned by his church, it is taken from his larger work, Mass for Many Nations. Other B.C. composers include Larry Nickel, with Kyrie Eleison, David Foster with The Power of the Dream and the late Diane Loomer as choral arranger for Canadian Maritimer Alex MacGillivray’s Song for Peace.

Other pieces address the world being our home, or turning the world around, a lively and rhythmic romp by Harry Belafonte and Robert Freedman. Well-known crowd pleasers like Colours of the Wind, Oscar Peterson’s Hymn to Freedom, John Rutter’s Distant Land and He Ain’t Heavy, He’s my Brother are also in the line-up.

Guest musicians Duo Accord play flute and guitar (Andy Brodie and Glen Goerzen), and accompany some choir settings. Featured high sopranos from within the choir include Sarah Markson and Tjana Witt.

Music achieves many harmonizing effects, so let music lead the way this year.

Concerts are Jan. 19, 7 p.m. and Jan. 20, 2 p.m. at Knox Presbyterian Church on Alexis Park Drive. Tickets available from choir members, Shear Dimensions, and at the door. $12 adults, children under 12 free.

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