Hillcrest choir takes gold and turns heads at games

2014-07-24 00:00

THE voices of the Hillcrest High School Glee Choir turned to gold at the World Choir Games in Latvia.

The seven-member choir won gold in the Open Scenic Pop Category and were awarded silver in the Open Choirs of Equal Voices Category.

“We did a theatre piece which set us apart from other choirs,” said choir conductor Judith Hawthorn. “It’s the first time Hillcrest High has competed internationally, so it was a ground-breaking tour.

“It was a leap of faith for all of us, for parents, for the children and for the school.”

An eye-catching feature of the choir were their dresses, courtesy of top local designer Karen Monk Klijnstra.

“Judith wanted to reflect an African lifestyle but not too overtly,” she said.

“There were African songs and there were songs in Afrikaans,” said Klijnstra.

“We were looking at our population across the full spectrum. The dresses were a cross-pollination of concepts, featuring a variety of elements, including the South African flag.”

The 15-minute presentation was built around the theme “James Bond in Africa”.

“We took the songs from the films and changed the words,” said Hawthorn.

“It was very fresh and innovative,” she said, explaining that “Bond” was an unsuspecting audience member.

“One of the choir members playing Miss Moneypenny came off the stage and went and asked him if he had ‘the package’. That’s not normally the sort of thing a choir does.”

The 37-member choir from St Mary’s DSG in Kloof also came back winners from the Choir Games. They won silver in the Scenic Pop category and gold in the Equal Voices category.

Local audiences can hear both these choirs in action at “Choirs in the Hills” on Saturday, August 2, at 2 pm at Makaranga Lodge where they will perform alongside a host of local school choirs, including the World Choir champions, Kearsney College.

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