We love to hear from our supporters.
Julie, who attended our Christmas in Blue concert on 3 December 2023, wrote to say:
Just when I swore I’d put ear plugs in for the whole of the Christmas Season again so as not to hear Christmas Carols murdered everywhere and all around, I came along to your fabulous concert yesterday and felt refreshed, invigorated and hopeful about Christmas Carols.
CONGRATULATIONS ALL on yesterday’s FABULOUS concert ….. it was just magical. Professional and beautiful. SO refreshing to hear the standard, (sometimes boring let’s be honest), traditional CAROLS arranged in such a refreshing way and in this jazzy genre. The choir were magnificent in accomplishing these tricky rhythms and harmonies and to keep up with those crazy jazz musos! What a challenge for a group of vocalists this BIG! Well done everyone. Well done Debra. Kelsey’s beautiful dolce vocal tones floating over the top and weaving in and out of the choir voices was just beautiful. THANK YOU ALL.
“Truly wonderful” “A most exciting concert” “My soul has been refreshed” “I’m still buzzing inside” with the beauty energy and excitement
(After Bach & Gjeilo concert at St Peters 2022)
“We knew something of Bach but wow, what an introduction to Gjeilo! Thank you.”
(After Bach and Gjeilo concert in Stanthorpe)
“Your choir has blown me away. I get it for the first time, as in really understanding how transcending a choir can be, with sublime music and sublime conducting. It’s been a sort of epiphany for me. I now fully understand why it means so much to you! I am so glad we went. It’s been nothing short of extraordinary. The piece with the water glasses had me in tears! What I was feeling was not sadness; just an incredible feeling of being moved!”
(After Esk performance 2023)
NB: the ‘water glasses’ were wine glasses filled with varying quantities of water and rubbed by singers to create harmonic accompaniment for Earth Teach Me Quiet by contemporary Latvian composer Ēriks Ešenvalds.
Rehearsal in Daisho Arcade 180 Brisbane – March 2021
(an email from a Sydney visitor on March 3 2021)
Dear Brisbane Concert Choir people
I was lucky enough last night to walk past your rehearsal in the city and wanted to thank you for that
moment of magic and pure beauty. I’m still entranced.
All the best, Claudia.
B Minor Mass – Bach 2019
We were greatly impressed by the professional standard of the concert itself and by the obviously massive amount of work your choir members and your very talented conductor must have put in to achieve this standard. Congratulations.
Loved the performance and ambience
Really worth attending – I thought the choir was terrific
Massive work. Great effort.
Debra Shearer-Dirie is a consummate director. The choir always so fine, the soloists, familiar or new, are splendid, the musicians suit the choir, venue perfectly, and the venue is v special – the timbre, the acoustic, the holy space with layers of music embedded in the material. I just love meeting the choristers, soloists afterwards and enjoy your lavish feast.
An inspiring performance.
ANZAC Day 2019 – Not just a name
“Happily, I was able to come to your concert today and it was such a treat! A touch of musical heaven, indeed! I loved the way the music was woven into the stories of our actual young men who lost their lives for our freedom. The use of ritual was simple and moving – the photos and poppies! The musical choices were really appropriate and interesting featuring such skilled composers.
We also loved being involved in the singing (Abide with me) and I was quite impressed with the background instrumental “cues” so perfectly timed to lead into each song. The whole presentation was a work of art!
My sincere congratulations to your talented Director, Readers, Accompanists, and of course – all the beautiful voices! I’m so glad I came!”
“I can’t tell you how much I was moved by your concert. It was so perfectly balanced with beautiful music and the stories of the soldiers , so eloquently brought to life by the narrators. Your choir makes a wonderful sound.”
Tour to eastern Canada Sept/Oct 2018
The Choir was well received on its fifth overseas tour – this time to eastern Canada, visiting and performing in and around Toronto, Montreal, Quebec City and Ottawa. In total there were ten performances with standing ovations a regular occurrence. In Ottawa we were pleased to have the High Commissioner for Australia in the audience. Performing in Notre Dame in Montreal was a highlight but we were fortunate to sing for a number of very appreciative Canadian audiences. Ruth McCall’s arrangement of Waltzing Matilda was a favourite!
“Thank you so much for fitting in a visit to Perth [Canada] on your tour. My husband, daughter and I want you to know how much we enjoyed your concert. Your music was outstanding.”
“Dear Debra – What a delight to hear your wonderful choir and get a chance to meet you!”
Remember them all – ANZAC Day 2018
“The Brisbane Concert Choir’s ANZAC Day concert was a wonderful opportunity to stop and honour veterans of our armed services
I found the new composition “War Within” by Gerardo Dirié most powerful. I have listened to several veterans speak about their experience of PTSD. I felt that this evocative piece captured that experience very well. The instrumentalists, the choral work and narration came together to help me enter into the experience of those who battle this war within. I was very grateful for this rich gift. As this work is performed on other occasions I hope that many others will come to understand the price some are paying for their service for our nation. Congratulations.” Minister, St Andrew’s Uniting Church
Snow Lay on the Ground – a Celebration of Christmas
What a joy filled performance. The first half certainly set the tone, the familiar and some new beautifully presented….The brass and the percussion added to the ‘glory’. I loved the blessing.”
“We congratulate you and the choir for developing and presenting Universal Resonance with its wonderful conception of intertwining science and music and for the novel idea of involving the enthusiastic Professor Tamara Davis.
This was a concert we could not miss. What a splendid blend it was for us, for [me] with my musical interests and for [my husband] with his interest in the history of science.”
Letter from audience members
Reflections on ANZAC Day 2017
I found the Anzac Day concert was a wonderfully moving way to complete the day. I had been in town since early morning so did not stay for afternoon tea, however I was really pleased that I chose to stay for the concert. Please convey my thanks and congratulations to all involved. I thought every part of the concert was a fitting tribute to all that this day means.”
Congratulations and many thanks for a wonderful experience on Anzac Day. The true essence of Love, Loss, Fear and Courage were superbly expressed.
“I would just like to pass along my gratitude to everyone who came and sang at our wedding. The sound was beautiful, and elevated the ceremony exactly as I could have wished.
Many people commented how lovely (and unusual!) it was to have a choir sing for the ceremony, and how wonderful you sounded.” The Bride
Reflections on ANZAC Day 2016
A moving program and performance
“Your choir is marvellous and the sound today was absolutely outstanding. You are truly the best choral conductor I have ever worked with (and I have worked with quite a few!). Can’t believe they are an amateur group. What an incredible program today too, with the readings in between. Everyone was truly moved by your planning and professional execution. Congratulations.”
To Debra Shearer-Dirié from French horn soloist, Lisa Conlon-Holownia
Tour of Spain and France a great success!
The pre-tour concert – Flavours of Spain and France – was a resounding success. As one audience member put it: “It was wonderful, I was transported to a different place and time. ” A great way to begin the tour.
“I have just returned from a weekend to Barcelona, where last Friday afternoon (25th September) I visited The Sagrada Familia, and I’m sure that it was your choir singing there. It was the most beautiful thing I have heard in such a long time, it moved me to tears. After being by ill a few years ago with a brain tumour, I have lost nearly all my hearing – but the beautiful harmonies of the music in the stunning setting of the church was simply stunning. I wanted to share with you the joy that you brought to me and hundreds of others there at the same time.
If you are ever in England I would love to come and hear you. Superb music thank you”
“My husband and I recently saw you perform at The Church of the Madelaine in Paris. We want you to know it was one of the highlights of our trip. The sound in the cathedral was breathtaking. Thank you so much for an unforgettable experience.” Couple from Washington
Coronation Anthems a great experience
Some comments from participants:
- Lovely music. I enjoyed the quick-fire, start-to-finish aspect of “from Scratch”
- Absolutely love working under Debra
- Making beautiful music with welcoming people.
- The orchestra was brilliant as was the musical director
- Loved singing Handel with orchestra.
- Singing great music in a pleasant atmosphere
20th Year Celebration Concert a musical success
A comment from a soloist, “I haven’t sung with a choir that sounds as good as this in … forever”.
“The Haydn was lovely with phrasing and the sound of the choir was excellent. The Brahms had warmth and the diction was good”.
An orchestral player said that the every time he plays with us the choir is even better.
Find out how you can help to support the choir
Choir performing our Christmas in Blue Concert on 3 December 2023, featuring arrangements by Will Todd, Pete Churchill, Kelsey Giarola and Ian Maurer.