A taste of the African American gospel tradition will take the stage in Warkworth later this month.
The Heaven Bent Gospel Choir, which specialises in singing a cappella music in four-part harmony, will be joined by Kai Rhythmix and the Mahurangi College senior choir in a fundraising concert at the Christ Church, Church Hill, Warkworth on May 23.
The 35-member Heaven Bent choir also includes modern African, Maori and Pacific sacred music in its repertoire, along with some of choir director Phil May’s contemporary arrangements.
Heaven Bent has a variety of songs that range from the foot-stomping to the deeply soulful, as well as members who span a wide age range.
One of the youngest is 16-year-old soprano, Eleanor Diaz from Kaipara Flats, who along with her mother Helen, makes the weekly 150km round trip into Ponsonby for the Tuesday night choir practises.
On Wednesday nights, Helen makes the switch from singing in the alto section of Heaven Bent to conduct local women’s choir, the Kai Rhythmix. They have a membership of about 20 singers with a focus on local participation and fellowship. Their songs, usually sung in three-part harmony, are sourced from the world, folk and sacred music genres.
The two choirs recently decided to join forces and stage the Autumn Harmonies concert to raise funds for the redevelopment of the Anglicn church and hall buildings of Warkworth’s historic Christ Church.
Joining them on the programme will be the Mahurangi College senior choir.
The concert will start at 2pm.
Tickets: Adults $20, concession/unwaged $15, children free.