Reblog: The young leaders of the Never Again movement are theatre kids

Read this:

It raises some good points.





MIV2018 Festival Wrap-up

Hi all. It’s been a couple of weeks…but very good ones.

MIV2018 was a blast. So much fun. I challenged myself in a few ways,  participating in different social events in ways I hadn’t done during my last IV. Here’s an idea: participation pays off. I had a really good time and even won a few times at different social things – which I was not expecting. Participation would have been prize enough. Enthusiasm leads to fun!

I’m not going to lie, it was full-on. IVs always are, especially the first half. Rehearsals for six hours a day, then social events in the evenings. This time, being Social Secretary, a part of me was always busy – mentally or physically – making sure things were running smoothly. By the end of the day, I was quite tired and rather “peopled out” – unusual for me!

I loved organising the social events though. I really like being (one of) the host(s) and seeing people having fun, making new friends and participating – like I said above, it all pays off.

The rehearsals were really good – we had a really good conductor who engaged us well. Patrick Burns got us – or at least me – thinking about the music in particular ways and working together to produce the desired quality sound. We had sectionals where our assistant conductor Leonard Weiss worked with Pat and us in two halves – sopranos and altos in one group, tenors and basses in the other.

One thing I love about rehearsing and performing in big choral groups is the journey from a diverse group of voices just starting to learn the music, to a cohesive group who’ve learnt their parts and sound confident and powerful. It’s bloody fantastic and with IVs, the process only takes ten days! I remember the first time we started feeling really cohesive (for me) – I was singing along as we ran through a piece. I heard the rest of us singing and realised, “This is going to be a great performance.”

I was right. 🙂

We sang really well, if I do say so myself. We heard great audience feedback afterwards too. It was a real treat to sing the pieces – I don’t know if I can pick a favourite, but all have taken turns popping up in my head since.

Thanks, MIV2018.

(Click on the pic for a caption – they’re not in date order, just for fun.)

MIV2018 Festival Opens Today!

After many months of prep, today is the day! Hooray!

If you’re coming, I’ll see you at camp dinner this evening. If not, maybe I’ll see you at the concert? 😛

I can’t wait to see all my friends and have a fantastic time.

Get tickets here:

See the Facebook event here:

And doesn’t our concert flyer look amazing?

(Link to a shareable version here: )

If you can’t make it or even if you can, please share these links and the flyer around. The concert is going to be really good, I can feel it, and I want everyone else to hear about that. 😉


MIV2018 Update – Six Days Until We Open the Festival!

MIV2018 logo: Teal background with pink and white lettering spelling out MiV (pink and white): 69th Intervarsity Choral Festival (in pink) Melbourne 2018 (in white).

Can you believe it?

In six days at time of publishing, the Melbourne Intervarsity Choral Festival 2018 opens. There’s such a lot planned. Rehearsals during the day, social events most nights. I’m excited and have been putting in place the finishing touches for my portfolio: I’m Social Secretary so I’m n charge of the fun.

Over 100 people are going to converge on our venues for the festival. As I was writing this post yesterday evening, I realised that it was pretty much a week to the hour until my first event starts. Eep! 😀

It’s not all just games, traditions and fun. Over ten days we’re learning several pieces to then perform on Saturday 20th January at 19:30. Get your tickets now!! I’d love to see as many of my Melbournian (is that word supposed to have no ‘o’?) and Victorian friends as possible at the concert. It is going to be bloody amazing I can already feel it.

Bring it on! 😀

Here’s the ticketing link with some information:

MIV 2018 is proud to present Light the Dark, a moving musical programme offering hope in a time of global turmoil and upheaval.

The concert features Vaughan Williams’ Toward the Unknown Region, Brahms’ Alto Rhapsody, Parry’s I Was Glad and the jewel in the crown, Elgar’s Light of Life. Conducted by Patrick Burns, featuring reknowned soloists Liane Keegan, Andrew Goodwin, Anna-Louise Cole, Raphael Wong and accompanied by the Melbourne Opera Orchestra, this concert will be a once-in-a-lifetime performance, and we hope that you will join us as we make history in the glorious Melbourne Town Hall.”

Would you do me a massive favour, especially if you’re reading this from a Melbourne or Victorian address (and/or through my Facebook) and “share the Dickens” (as one of my friends, a co-convenor, put it) out of this link? Even if you can’t go, pass the information along in case someone else in your circle might want to. Thanks heaps! I hope to see you at the concert – or at MIV, if you’re an IVer reading this.

*makes excited noise*


P.S. Take care of yourselves weather-wise! In Victoria, the next couple of days are scorchers, with more to follow later in the week (I’m very glad of aircon with MIV!). Meanwhile, in the US there’s a hell of a snow event happening atm, I gather. So yeah. Stay safe!


2017 Soundtrack 

It’s that time of year again, where I compile a list of songs that mattered to me this year.

1. Think of Meryl Streep (from FAME!) – due to a powerful political moment by Meryl Streep at the start of the year that I blogged about then.

2. Bread and Roses (and maybe also Power in a Union). First one is a folk song, the second is by Billy Bragg. They reference the Women’s March and surrounding politics.

The next are a bunch of love songs that speak to me. I first listened to them on Triple J and they remind me of feelings I felt then and feel now.

3. Thinking Out Loud (Ed Sheeran)

4. Say My Name (Tove Stryke)

5. I Want Something Just Like This (The Chainsmokers)

The next one is one of a bunch I heard when watching my first Eurovision Party this year.

6. Eurovision 2017:

Running on Air (Nathan Trent)

Lights and Shadows (O’G3NE)

Origo (Joci Pápai)

Where I Am (Anja)

My Friend (Jacques Houdek)

Grab the Moment (JOWST)

Story of My Life (Naviband)

Beautiful Mess (Kristian Kostov)

I Feel Alive (IMRI)

Yodel It (Alex Florea & Ilinca)

Gravity (Hovig)

Fly with Me (Artsvik)

Flashlight (Karsia Moś)

Amar pelos dois (Salvador Sobral)

City Lights (Blanche)

Don’t Come Easy (Isaiah)

Never Give Up on You (Lucie Jones)

Next are some from the concerts of the year:

7. Te Deum (from the MonUCS May concert, Choral Icons). First time I’d heard this song and I still remember it well. From the same concert, other standouts included Five Eyes and Vivaldi’s Gloria.

8. Peace/ EquipYourself for Life, Pink Telegram, 0808, and other songs from the John Monash Peace Cantata – a highlight of the year and one I’m proud to have participated in. My only regret is that uni prevents me from participating in the overseas performance next year.

9. Pirates of Penzance (from MonUCS’ performance). I find myself humming songs from the production at times still. I’m not singling out any because they were all very good.

10. Finally, Christmas songs. This year, those include adapted versions of Winter Wonderland and White Christmas as for once they were almost appropriate. As well as “Green Book Carols”, from MIV carolling hugs and LaTUCS’ carols performance. Also the Vaughn Williams’ piece, Fantasia on Christmas Carol. I was reminded of the piece at the start of December and realised that I really had had a good year, as the last part of the piece hoped.

There might be more, but I think ten is a good starting point! Happy New Year everyone. I’m currently finishing this on a plane that’ll land back in Australia from Japan in a bit under an hour. I’ll post this then.

Keep an eye out for the rest of the Japan Trip posts this week and I hope you have a good year ahead of you. I reckon I do, but I know it’ll be busy too. MIV2018 starts on the 11th after all…


“An ORGANic Christmas” Concert Review

Last Saturday’s concert from MonUCS (Monash University Choral Society) was really good. It had fun pieces and grand pieces and carols. An organ accompanied some songs.

Their opening piece (Regina Coeli from Cavalleria Rusticana by Pietro Mascagni) began with quite the entrance. The choir walked in two columns between the audience seats in order to get to the front of the church to perform from. I thought that was pretty cool.

There were the pieces I hadn’t heard before, sung with vocal strength and expression. Operatic choruses which were gorgeous to listen to and surprising, emotional and sweet by turns. Some of these pieces had soloists – all of whom performed very well. These pieces included the Priest’s Chorus (from Die Zauberflote), Chorus of Enchanted Islanders (from Alcina), Dido’s Lament and Final Chorus (from Dido and Aenea) and even a humming one, Humming Chorus (from Madame Butterfly).

I thoroughly enjoyed myself as I watched my friends perform after weeks of hard work. I also enjoyed singing along to some of the carols as we were encouraged to do – though only at mezzo piano volume so as to hear the actual choir. The carols were not all your usual fare – in fact, two of them I only knew thanks to the carolling gigs last week. That made it all the more fun. Carols included Infant Holy Infant Lowly, Zither Carol, Gloucestershire Wassail and others.

The choir were balanced beautifully, each section blending well (the ultimate goal) while holding their own parts in a superb manner. Each section also had its chance to shine, enabled by the range of songs chosen. For example, it was noted that the tenors sang “without hesitation … and with a wonderful lightness” as one friend put it. The altos were the smallest section of the four, but it didn’t feel like it. The basses carried the bottom range as they are supposed to, giving strength and resonance, while the sopranos were glorious on top.

Bravo, MonUCS! I look forward to seeing what you’ll do next year – and to singing with some of you at MIV. Well done!






Holiday gatherings and fun

Writing this quickly before I head off to my last choir night of the year.

I’ll write a review of the concert I attended on Saturday (MonUCS’ “ORGANic Christmas”) tomorrow. I want to do it justice and time slipped by me today. In part because less sleep last night from a choir holiday party combined with the afternoon sun on a 37*C day is not conducive to productivity, I think. XD

Choir parties are the best – always great food and conversation with lovely welcoming people. Last night’s one had Karaoke even!

Carolling with MIV – and at LaTUCS’ own gig – has been really lovely this year. My favourite carols are a lot more complex now than the favourites I had when younger and it’s really nice to perform them with friends.

There are still a few chances to see the MIV carollers in the lead-up to Christmas, but I won’t be among them.

As of next Monday, I’m off to Japan on a family holiday until the New Year. I will try to keep you more-or-less abreast of our journey with the help of Womble again  I make no promises as to when any updates will occur though.

Must dash to LaTUCS now….

Remember to buy concert tickets to see the MIV choir with soloists and orchestra perform on January 20th (less than ONE MONTH to go!!): Facebook event here and tickets here. Monday was spent getting decorations for MIV with other committee friends…. I’m getting excited now.




Fun stuff: all the choir things

Yesterday, my choir (LaTUCS) sang carols at an end-of-year event at uni. Nice and I’m hopeful it’ll lead to further opportunities.

This weekend (starting this evening) I will be a-carolling with MIV2018 people.  Tomorrow afternoon too. Our concert tickets for the end-of-festival performance are on sale now. Put the evening of the 20th of January 2018 in your calendars (Facebook link here – friends should expect invites shortly) and get some tickets via this link.

Also, MIV merchandise sales close on Monday, December 11th – this coming Monday which also happens to be the one-month-out date! Wow. If you want a tie-dye tote bag, a keepcup, promise of concert CD and participant photo, or tickets to the “Aquademic” Dinner, please head on over to, sign up for an account on the website and buy the things you want.

This weekend has other fun apart from carols. Tomorrow evening I’m attending a choir concert by MonUCS. Can’t wait – the program sounds really good. 😀 Here is a link to the Facebook event and click here for tickets (or get them at the door). Hooray!



Check this out… Goosebumps! 

Wow!! After LaTUCS rehearsal tonight we found this: 

It gives me goosebumps. There’s something really good about singing in a massed choir. 1500+ people though… :O 


Hip hip huzzah for a wonderful Pirates concert

As my post on Friday indicated, on Sunday evening I went off to see The Pirates of Penzance by MonUCS. It was a fantastic show. As I reflected on earlier this year, there’s something really nice about watching your friends perform a great show, knowing that they’ve been working towards it for months. 

It was really, really fun. I’d never seen it before, which made it all the more special. It was both fun and funny, touching on themes of duty, family and choice but mostly just being a jolly good romp. For some time I’d been avoiding spoilers of songs and so on, but since the concert they’ve been running through my head, competing for attention. They were well-sung after all. Acting was also very good. I could tell people enjoyed themselves on stage just as we enjoyed watching them. 😉 

Afterwards (after packing up or “bumping out”) we went off to a choir member’s house for more singing, food and conversation. Fun! 

As I said afterwards, I’m so proud of all my friends. Well done! I can’t wait for the projects to come.