It’s not always that when a singer departs, she leaves a gaping hole in our hearts. That rhymes! How fitting! Katherine style. I’ll mostly miss her devilishly adorable sense of humour, her dancing with and miming out song lyrics, her fantastic crochet and knit creations, her beautiful photos – and, well, just HER. XO Holly
These sessions brought a concentrated, focused enjoyment to singing and a more profound understanding of the music, alongside a very physical awareness of sound. It’s an addictive feeling and also a familiar one, because it condenses the experience of every single Stairwell Carollers rehearsal.
Pete fills each Wednesday night with intensity and purpose; he points out the interplay of voices in the music, plays with interpretation to bring out different aspects of each song, and encourages everyone to hear imperfections in tone and blend, smoothing them away to create something pure.
Of course, this couldn’t happen without the Carollers themselves, every one of them warm and funny and generous, who come together with hard work and good humor* to make Pete’s vision happen (as best we can).
Singing with the group has the feeling of finally snapping in the correct puzzle piece: it’s so perfect and incredibly satisfying. I didn’t know what to expect when my family was posted to Ottawa, but I cannot tell you how lucky I feel to have become involved with this amazing choir, led by this exacting and exciting director, who every season gathers a repertoire that challenges and delights.
Of all the things I expected to gain from my Canadian experience, a deeper and more nuanced appreciation for choral music was roughly nowhere on the list, and I am stupidly grateful for it. The past couple of years turned out to be challenging, but being able to sing with the Carollers has been a joy, and to have had their friendship and music to rely on during this time was an absolute gift.
*I know you Canadians spell it “humour” but I have to stand my ground. by Katherine Marek Auditions still ongoing until August 2022 – we are especially searching for tenor and bass voices. And maybe an alto…
About The Stairwell Carollers: