Choir In Harmony with their audience

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Friday night was music night as the ladies of In Harmony presented their annual concert to a well-attended West Kirk in Arbroath.

The audience’s hearts were captured from the off with “Love Walked In” and the Gershwin theme was continued with two pieces from Porgy and Bess, sung in a soulful, hymn-like manner by the choir.

Two special guests performed next: Kit Storm walked onto the stage, sat down and played the fiddle – what a revelation! The lament, “Back to the Hills” was interpreted with great beauty and passion by the 15 year old, who was a finalist at this year’s Arbroath Music Festival; then Nicole Vasey, a second year student at the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland in Glasgow, made a welcome return. She opened with a soprano aria from the opera Gianni Schicchi by Puccini. Her beautiful voice rang out across the packed pews to wonderful effect. Nicole’s second piece was “The Water Is Wide” and the lovely song was performed to critical acclaim.

“Fields of Gold” by Sting opened the second half of the concert to fine effect, with some nice sectional work from the ensemble. Back to the rock ’n’ roll days for the next one, “All I Have To Do Is Dream”.

Kit Storm once again stepped on to stage and played the most wonderful reel – he’s sure to be a name to watch.

In Harmony performed a medley of songs from “Oliver!” - which was one of the highlights of the evening. “West Side Story” provided the song “America” and the ladies nailed it.

“If I Loved You” sung Nicole Vasey to open her final guest spot and showed the enraptured audience how it should be sung. She reprised “Waltz Of My Heart” from her last visit two years ago – it might be clichéd but it was one of those occasions when you could hear people’s jaws drop.

It is always amazing when a choir dispenses with its song folders, sings from memory and focuses on the conductor, how the overall quality and passion of the vocal performance improves – this old adage held true when the ladies of In Harmony launched into their finale. Musical director Vicki White proved once again she is capable of moulding In Harmony into a fine musical aggregation who are a credit to Arbroath. A special mention must be made of the fabulous Alison Hart, accompanist throughout the evening.

A vote of thanks was provided by Choir President Joan MacGregor who noted that the proceeds from this concert and the choir’s other activities were being donated to Arbroath Music Festival, Maggies Dundee and the Arbroath Support Group for COPD.