One of the cornerstone events of the Wellington choral scene is the annual “May” Workshop, hosted by the Wellington branch of the New Zealand Choral Federation. The event, which has been running since 1988, attracts well over 200 singers, who put together a concert-length piece of music over a single weekend. The workshop starts with rehearsals on the Friday evening and all day Saturday, and ends with a public concert on Saturday evening. The concert regularly attracts large audiences, drawn by the prospect of hearing popular works performed by such a large group.
As suggested by the name, the workshop traditionally runs in early May each year, having done so since the second event in 1989. However, with COVID-19 interrupting most choral events in the early part of 2022, the decision was made to move this much loved workshop weekend to October, rather than cancel it outright. Beyond the date change, the event will otherwise stick with the tried and true format of previous years.
For 2022, which marks the 34th running of the event, Carl Orff’s hugely popular Carmina Burana has been selected as the featured work. Carmina Burana is one of the most regularly performed masterpieces of the 20th century, becoming known the world over for its iconic fatalistic chorus O Fortuna.
After a highly successful 2021 performance of Fauré’s Requiem and Bernstein’s Chichester Psalms, Brent Stewart will return as Musical Director for the 2022 event. Stewart becomes just the fifth director to be asked to lead the workshop weekend back to back, following in the footsteps of the late Peter Godfrey, and Michael Fulcher.
Registrations are now open for the event. If you would prefer to register or pay through another method please feel free to contact the May Workshop coordinator Lynda Hunter (firstname.lastname@example.org). For those seeking accommodation, there are rooms set aside at the Brentwood Hotel for attendees, at a rate of $149.50 per night (rate for up to two people). To access this arrangement simply call the Brentwood Hotel (04 920 0400), and quote the group booking number 83154. Proof of workshop registration may be required upon check in.
Rehearsal One: 7:00pm - 9:30pm, Friday 7 October
Rehearsal Two & Three: 9:30am - 12:30pm & 2:00pm - 5:00pm, Saturday 8 October
Public Concert: 7:30pm - 8:45pm, Saturday 8 October