Abracadabra! billed as The Magic of the Musicals this concert began with showstopper A Cole Porter Medley and lived up to its promise.
Directed by acclaimed choral expert Stephen Roberts, Honley Male Voice Choir demonstrated outstanding diction and an unshakable sense of ensemble in this, and in each well-known song that followed. We were captivated by some passionate performances as in Anthem and Love Changes Everything.
Special mention must be made of the baritones’ flawless unison singing in Memory and of the tireless efforts of the first tenor section, the section least in number yet not in fortitude.
Hey Presto! Singing turned into playing, as newly appointed accompanist Jason Hawkins tackled the demanding Masquerade solo with pianistic wizardry, proving himself to be not only a first-class accompanist but a top pianist too.
This was a concert with something for everyone and on walked a group of six Year 9 pupils from Honley High School. I doubted whether these young voices would be heard in this cavernous hall. However, teacher Laura Taylor inspired this tiny group to produce a ton of musical magic which was the highlight of the evening!
These pure-toned voices blended seamlessly together in the a capella number Somewhere, which cast a spell that remained unbroken as the larger Honley High School Choir took us through a Sister Act medley. Soloist Abigail Jackson produced a promising voice in For Good and pupil Grace Turner skilfully accompanied the choir.
The choral programme was varied by solos sung beautifully by local lass Sarah Ogden who brought a real presence to the stage. Sarah truly characterised classic numbers such Some Enchanted Evening and Send in the Clowns.
Finally, combining all the singers created an uplifting and powerful sound. You’ll Never Walk Alone, sung by everyone, successfully rounded off a good evening of entertainment.