A Hobart choir Meli-Melo helped raise funds for humanitarian aid in Nepal at a special Christmas concert held at Saint John the Baptist Catholic Church, Glenorchy, in early December.
The Parish Pastoral Council had recently made a decision to look beyond its Parish boundaries and to take the Salesian work in Nepal as their special fund raising project. At the same time as they were looking for a fund raising event, the Meli Melo choir was looking for a venue for its Christmas concert. Contact was made and a mutually beneficial partnership began.
The concert, ‘Christmas in the Alps’, featured an uplifting programme of traditional carols and folk songs from alpine regions of Switzerland, France and beyond, sung in glorious four-part harmony.
A highlight was the Tasmanian (and possibly Australian) premiere of Fr Pierre Kaelin’s very beautiful Petite Messe pour Noel, or “little Christmas mass” which, though sung in Latin, is based upon arrangements of familiar carols. (As a bonus, the choir very generously stayed after the concert and sang the Petite Messe pour Noel during the regular Saturday night mass.)
The choir director, Swiss-born René Rime, founded the group around five years ago. “Meli-Melo choir sings for the love of music, and a wish to bring a bit of joy to the world”, says René.
The choir certainly brought joy to the capacity Glenorchy audience, and onward to Nepal.
Patrons were asked to give a donation to the Salesian work in Nepal with all funds raised directly supporting projects focused on training local villagers in construction to help them rebuild after this year’s earthquake in their country.
Parish Priest, Fr Lawrie Moate SBD, was overwhelmed with the response of the appreciative audience and over $1600 was raised. He has secured the choir for a repeat concert in Advent next year!
By Mary-Anne Johnson