WHAT does Woodvale WAAPA classical vocal student Daniel Mullaney have in common with ethereal female pop-folk trio Seeker Lover Keeper, wunderkind Lisa Mitchell and inaugural The Voice Australia winner Karise Eden?
They all boast a performance credit among the hallowed walls of St Joseph’s Church in Subiaco. Eden will make her appearance there in October.
“The church is very beautiful and the priests and the church committee have been very welcoming,” WAAPA co-ordinator of Vocal Studies and Opera Patricia Price said.
The annual concert was also held there last year.
Her pupils will perform the music of early romantic composer Mendelssohn’s oratorio Elijah.
The performance, which depicts events in the life of the Old Testament prophet, has been scored for four vocal soloists, a full symphony orchestra and 60-member chorus, drawn from the undergraduate and postgraduate student body.
“Elijah is a highly dramatic religious work and has so many extremes; we can sing quiet, still moments in there and we can sing big operatic, dramatic moments too,” Price said.
“It has both of those wonderful orchestrations so it’s a venue that’s beautifully suited, with its acoustic delays.”
English-born Price was determined to introduce regular oratorio performances – large musical compositions including an orchestra, a choir and soloists – when she took the reins of the classical vocal program at WAAPA in 2007.
“With my training at the Royal College, oratorio was my bread and butter, singing a different oratorio almost every week during the beginning of my solo career,” she said.
“That tradition doesn’t really exist in Australia, but so many of these students go overseas to work so when I came to WAAPA, I felt we needed to set up an oratorio tradition here.”