Scottish singers came together for a major benefit concert on Monday for the people of Christchurch, New Zealand, and raised over £3,000 (over 6,000 New Zealand dollars). (Listen to the concert here http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-scotland-12608694)
The concert took place in St Mary’s Episcopal Cathedral, Glasgow which is an almost exact twin of the cathedral which has been damaged in Christchurch. The two buildings were built at the same time to a design by the same architect. The concert featured the music of several New Zealanders living in Scotland and has received widespread media coverage in both Scotland and New Zealand.
The Cathedral was packed with audience members and performers, including choristers from Glasgow Chamber Choir, Strathclyde University Chamber Choir, the Royal Scottish Academy of Music and Drama (RSAMD), St Mary’s Cathedral Choir, Edinburgh Singers, Glasgow University Chapel Choir, Edinburgh Royal Choral Union and the Royal School of Church Music (RSCM) Scottish Voices and two New Zealanders currently studying at the RSAMD.
Cathedral Provost The Very Rev Kelvin Holdsworth said: “People in Scotland have all kinds of strong links with people in New Zealand. This concert is an act of solidarity with the people of Christchurch. Christchurch Cathedral is like a 'twin' of St Mary's Episcopal Cathedral in Glasgow, having been built by the same architect at almost exactly the same time. As we look around the building in Glasgow, our hearts go out to those who are struggling to cope in a damaged city half a world away.”
Organiser Michael Bawtree added: “Scotland has very strong links with New Zealand. Many of us who performed at the concert have friends and family living and working in Christchurch; many have visited, lived, performed and worked in New Zealand; others are simply keen to show that support by giving of their time and talent.”
Stephen Chambers, an RSAMD Opera student from New Zealand who performed at the concert, said: "My Dad (Dr. John Chambers) was in Christchurch on a Medical conference when the Earthquake hit. He managed to escape unscathed from the fourteenth floor of his hotel, which looked as though it was about to collapse. Like so many Kiwi's around the world, I feel helpless. I hope that in putting on this concert we can get some money together to aid those hardest hit in the beautiful country that I call home."
Funds raised at this benefit concert will be passed through official channels to those most in need.
The Very Rev Kelvin Holdsworth, Provost of St Mary’s Cathedral, Glasgow
St Mary’s Cathedral Office – 0141-339-6691
Lorna Finley, Communications Officer, Scottish Episcopal Church
0131 225 6357
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