REVIEW: Rainbow Chorus – Classics to Classical

Brian Butler July 17, 2017

I have to remind myself that this diverse and inclusive singing group is an amateur non–audition choir where some members can’t read music.

That makes their latest concert all the more remarkable because they opened the event with a beautiful and sensitive rendition of the phenomenally tricky Faure Requiem. The piece is so well-loved and well-known that it’s a brave thing for any choir to tackle.

But under the leadership of their charismatic and energetic musical director Aneesa Chaudhry, the chorus managed to bring fresh insight to the piece, performing with gusto where necessary and also a lightness of touch in the more lyrical and tender passages.

In the big set pieces they show their true colour and power and I would like them to revisit the piece maybe next year and tackle it again.

The second half took them back in their comfort zone singing a range of musical numbers from Bowie and Mercury to Lady Gaga, and filling St George’s Church, Brighton with colour, humour and deeply felt emotion.

It wasn’t without irony that they sang the beautiful Million Voices – a Russian entry in  Eurovision – against the present background of anti-gay detention and execution in that troubled area of the world.

Being a Gershwin fan , I revelled in their clever interpretation of Let’s Call the Whole Thing Off, but their renditions of gay anthems Hand in Hand and Born This Way show as their MD said that they are proud and out – and they have a lot to be proud of.

The  amazing talent of their accompanist Mojca Monte adds much to their evenings and she excelled on both the church organ and the piano.

This was the last concert with Finola Brophy as their chair. Someone has big boots to fill to follow her.

Rainbow Chorus next perform in Brighton in their winter concert on December 9. I urge you to hear them .