News, Events and Culture

City privileged to host official British and Irish Lions Male choir concert

Friday June 23 2017

Palmerston North is one of only four venues for the touring British and Irish Lions Male Voice Choir. The three week tour is timed to coincide with the Lions Rugby team’s tour of New Zealand.

Photo shows Lions Male Voice Choir singing in a rugby stadium.

“Having the British and Irish Male Voice Choir performing as part of the city’s three day Winter Festival is a wonderful way for our community to feel a greater connection to the Lions Rugby tour,” Ian Littleworth, Palmerston North City Council’s Community Engagement Manager, says. “This is a fantastic opportunity for people to hear the richness of a strong male choir, particularly for those with links to the United Kingdom.”

The choir first performed during the 2001 tour to Australia and performs a wide selection of music. Choristers are drawn from all over the UK. 

Musical Director Mark Burrows of Melody Music is leading the tour. “In 2005, we last visited New Zealand with the Lions and were struck by the beauty of the country and the friendliness of its people,” says Burrows. “ We are delighted to be visiting your shores again. Whatever the outcome of the rugby, we know the choir will make new and lasting friendships."

Prior to leaving the United Kingdom, the choir performed for the Lions squad in preparation for the massive task of playing against the All Blacks.

The Palmerston North concert also features local youth talent with Freyberg High School’s Bella and the Fellas performing. They recently won the Judith and Guy Donaldson Trophy for Best Performance of a New Zealand Work at the Big Sing held at the Regent Theatre on 14 June. They will be led by their Choir Director Kirsten Clark.

Palmerston North Boys’ High School’s OK Chorale is also performing. Established in 1993, they have consistently performed well in competitions and recently won Best Unaccompanied Work and Best Overall Performance at the Big Sing and are hoping to compete in the National Secondary Schools choir Big Sing Finale. They will be led by Musical Director Graeme Young.

Palmerston North City Council is supporting the concert as part of the Winter Festival which means ticket prices are at an affordable price.

The British and Irish Male Voice Choir concert is on Friday 30 June 2pm–3.30pm at the Palmerston North Conference and Function Centre. Bookings can be made at the venue and TicketDirect for $10 + fees.