Soundings in action, conducted by Denis Donnelly. The upcoming concerts will focus on the music of the Beatles. (Andrew Kielbowicz)

Choir offers a capella take on Beatles hits

Soundings will perform concerts in Oak Bay and Sidney May 24 and 25

The timeless music of the Beatles is being given a new twist this month, as the Victoria vocal ensemble Soundings sing Fab Four hits a capella.

This year marks the 50th anniversary of the Beatles’ last studio album, Abbey Road, and the choir’s concerts take place May 24 and 25 in Oak Bay and Sidney.

ALSO READ: Folk ‘n Fiddle Fest announce lineup for summer Sidney concerts

Soundings founder and director Denis Donnelly says he hopes the performances will be a celebration of the Liverpudlians’ music. He believes the enduring popularity of the Beatles’ music is because of the visceral effect it has on listeners.

“I grew up with the Beatles and was entranced with them when I heard their music in high school. It was a magical night when I got a copy of Sergeant Pepper’s [Lonely Hearts Club Band], I was dancing all over the room listening to it over and over again.”

Over the years, Donnelly has painstakingly crafted a repertoire of Beatles songs, and thought the 50th anniversary of Abbey Road would be the perfect time to perform them. The 26-voice Soundings ensemble spend months memorizing words and practising, and the two May dates will form the group’s summer season.

ALSO READ: Thieves target Sidney in multiple car break-ins late Monday night

Some of the longer songs will be accompanied by the Cascadia String Quartet, but the majority of songs will be sung a capella.

Donnelly, who received a lifetime achievement award from the BC Choral Federation in 2010, believes there is a power to vocal ensemble music, “I think there’s a greater connection with the audience, a more direct and stronger bond.”

Soundings plan to sing a few old favourites mixed with lesser known numbers. These include Julia, which John Lennon wrote for his mother, If I Fell and Mean Mr Mustard. The songs will cover Paul McCartney, John Lennon and George Harrison led songs.

Donnelly was part of the first intake of students to Sidney Elementary school and he sees the Mary Winspear Centre concert as a homecoming of sorts.

ALSO READ: Peninsula Players unravel mystery on the Nile

“I’m really happy we’re performing at Mary Winspear, I’m a Brentwood Bay resident and grew up in Sidney so I’m really happy to be performing there.”

Soundings has been going for 18 years and currently has 26 members. The group like to keep their numbers under 30 to maintain the intimate nature of their performances but say anyone interested in joining should visit soundingsmusic.ca.

The May 24 performance will be at 7:30 p.m. in the Dave Dunnet Community Theatre in Oak Bay High School. For tickets email tickets@soundsingsmusic.ca. The May 25 show is at 7:30 p.m. in the Mary Winspear Centre in Sidney. For tickets phone 250-656-0275.



nick.murray@peninsulanewsreview.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Just Posted

Improvements to Sinclair Road coming

Development comes after Cadboro Bay Residents Association (CBRA) raised concerns

Saanich councillor open to more commercial operations in local parks

Coun. Ned Taylor had raised the issue during his election campaign

Search for missing Saanich Peninsula pair ends in tragedy

Vehicle found with two deceased occupants inside

Langford’s Sarah Beckett Memorial playground opens

Life of West Shore RCMP Constable honoured with new playground

Greater Victoria gemmologist shines with life-time achievement award

Anthony de Goutière received award from Canadian Gemmological Association

VIDEO: Here’s the news you missed this weekend

Some of the top weekend headlines from your community and beyond

VIDEO: Ride to Conquer Cancer rolls into Hope

Thousands of cyclist descend on small town for annual cancer fundraiser

Island murder victim’s mom expresses outrage over mental fitness decision of the accused

Smith vows to keep fighting until justice served for Descoteau

B.C. VIEWS: Pipelines set to roll as federal politicians posture

Projects to drive B.C., Canadian economy in years ahead

B.C. Lions fall to 1-9 after 13-10 loss to Ticats

Lowly Leos have dropped six straight CFL contests

VIDEO: B.C. woman meets biological mother, 38 years later

Mother never gave up hope of finding daughter, despite all the obstacles

B.C. man who died after rescuing swimmer was known for helping others

Shaun Nugent described as a dad, a coach, a hero and ‘stand-up guy’ at celebration of life

B.C. RCMP plane chases fleeing helicopter as part of major cross-border drug bust

The helicopter eventually landed at a rural property near Chilliwack

Vancouver Island man dead after reported hit-and-run incident

Oceanside RCMP seek public’s help gathering information

Most Read