News and Events

Our next concert


We’re excited about our next concert

Angels Dancing — Choral Masterworks

which will be in collaboration with William McElwee and the St. Mary of the Angels choir. This is a fantastic church choir with a lot of great voices, and it will be a delight to sing with them in their stunning church. Ingrid, William and guest conductor Heather Easting will share the conducting.

The programme is made up entirely of the absolute gems of the choral repertoire:

I was glad (1902) – Psalm 122, Sir CHH Parry (1848-1918)

Bogoroditse Devo, All-Night Vigil Op. 37 (1915), Sergei Rachmaninov (1873-1943)

Abendlied (1855) – Luke 24:29, Josef Rheinberger (1839-1901)

Qui habitat (2022) – Psalm 91, William McElwee

Miserere (c. 1630s) – Psalm 51, Gregorio Allegri (c. 1582 – 1652)

Hymn to St Cecilia (1942), – Text W.H. Auden, Benjamin Britten (1913-1976)

Hail, gladdening light (1919), John Keble (1792-1866), Charles Wood (1866-1926)

Es ist ein Ros’ entsprungen (1990), (Text 1599), Jan Sandström

Cantique de Jean Racine, Op. 11 (1865), Gabriel Fauré (1845-1924)

Three Motets (1892), Charles Wood (1852-1924)

1. Justorum animae – Wisdom 3

2. Coelos ascendit hodie – 12th Century Hymn

3. Beati quorum via – Psalm 119

Crucifixus a 8, Missa Sancti Christophori, Antonio Lotti (1667-1740)

Zadok the Priest (1727), Kings 1:38-40, GF Handel (1685-1759)

The concert will be at
7:30pm on Saturday 27 August 2022 
at St. Mary of the Angels, Boulcott Street.

Tickets are $25.00

Click the link below or scan the QR code to order your tickets at Eventbrite:


Festival Singers 2022 plans

Thanks for visiting our website.

If you are looking for a choir to sing with in 2022 we’d love hear from you.
Contact details are at the bottom of the page.

Covid Policy

  • If you are unwell, please don’t come to choir rehearsals or events.
  • Wearing a mask is strongly recommended.

We will review this policy as the Covid situation changes.

Programme for 2022

Starlit Night concert: 7:30pm Saturday 14 May 2022 at St Peters on Willis

Included: Seek Him That Maketh the Seven Stars by Jonathan Dove, and Nocturnes by Lauridsen. Featured Soprano Rowena Simpson

Choral Smash Hits Concert with the choir of  St. Mary of the Angels, 17 Boulcott Street – 27 August 2022

Programme will include: Zadok the Priest, Parry’s I Was Glad, Allegri’s Miserere, Stanford’s Three Latin Motets, and a wide range of composers from Josquin to Britten. 

A mid-year workshop

“Rewritten” concert. October / November 2022

We’ll sing music that’s been used in one context and then rewritten for another, e.g. JS Bach’s Passion Chorale that Paul Simon rewrote as American Tune. 

December 2022

  • We plan to sing at the Seatoun Carols event at St Christopher’s that fundraises for the Wellington City Mission.
  • We may perform a Christmas concert
  • We may sing at some rest-homes


2022 Festival Singers’ Vocal Workshop

Thanks to everyone who came to our Vocal Workshop on Saturday, 12 February 2022

at Hilda’s Anglican Church ,311 The Parade, Island Bay from 10:00am to 3:30pm


The sessions were  professionally led by:

  • William McElwee  Vocal coach

  • Ingrid Schoenfeld: Musical director

  • Jonathan Berkahn: Composer and accompanist

Guy E Jansen PhD (1935–2019)

Guy conducts a rehearsal at our 40th Anniversary Renuion
at Khandallah Presbyterian Church in 2016. (Photo: Quentin Christie)

In 2019 we reflected on the legacy of Guy Jansen PhD (1935–2019) founder of our greater Wellington community choir in 1976. He aimed to foster and encourage all ages to sing and support the best of Christian music styles, and to encourage and develop new music for the future.


Phone 475 8855 or
email to reserve your tickets


2018 Movie Fundraiser

(We will have another movie fundraiser in May 2019)

An American in Paris – A New Musical

4:30pm for 5.00pm start Sunday  27 May 2018
The Lighthouse, 52 Beach Street, Petone


Tickets from Choir members
or email Philip:

This film of the stunning, award-winning West End
stage show has just been released.
it is the story of a young American soldier who falls in love
with a French woman in post WW2 Paris.
Featuring George & Ira Gershwin’s music and lyrics,
along with dynamic dance sequences.


SingFest 2018

Festival Singers was one of 8 community choirs who gathered
on Saturday 7 April 2018 St Peter’s Church, Ruahine Street, Palmerston North, for SingFest 2018
***Special thanks to Kate Love Photographer for the photos***

Ingrid conducting and Jonathan on piano, lead us singing Awake the Harp – from Haydn’s Creation. (Photo – Kate Love Photographer)

We were one of eight choirs who assembled at St Peter’s Church, Ruahine Street Palmerston North on 7 April 2018. (Photo – Kate Love Photographer)

2017 Christmas Concert


Come Celebrate Christmas

Music included:
Mozart’s charming Pastoral Mass in G major, K. 140, and works by J S Bach, William Billings, J Barnby, Edward Elgar, Jonathan Berkhan and Zoltan Kodaly.

Directed by Jonathan Berkahn

7-00pm Sunday 10 December 2017
St Barnabas Anglican Church
35 Box Hill, Khandallah

Thomas Nikora ~ accompanist
The Festival Players
& special guests
The Northern Chorale.

 A koha for Downtown Community Ministry was collected

Click here to download a PDF of the programme booklet for the concert.

Click the picture below for a video clip of Festival Singers and The Northern Chorale singing Jonathan Berkahn’s lively “Behold, the joyful day is nigh” as part of our 2017 Christmas concert.

(Thanks to Alexander Garside of Garside Imaging for the sound and video recording and editing.)


NZ Choral Federation workshop 2017

On 5 & 6 May 2017 several Festival Singers members took part in the NZ Choral Federation’s workshop learning and then performing Donizetti’s Mass in G Minor.

Wonderfully led by conductor David Squire and accompanied by our own Jonathan Berkahn. Thomas Nikora also helped out leading sectionals.

Below are quick snaps of the basses, tenors and sopranos (top) and altos (bottom)


On 30 April 2017 we had a successful fundraiser film evening watching this wonder full documentary.

The Music of Strangers –Yo-Yo Ma & The Silk Road Ensemble

About the film

 “The intersection of cultures is where new things emerge.”
 Yo-Yo Ma, cellist and founder of the Silk Road Ensemble

Watch the official trailer here:

Over the past 16 years, an extraordinary group of musicians has come together to celebrate the universal power of music. Named for the ancient trade route linking Asia, Africa and Europe, The Silk Road Ensemble, an international collective created by acclaimed cellist Yo-Yo Ma, exemplifies music’s ability to blur geographical boundaries, blend disparate cultures and inspire hope for both artists and audiences.

The Music of Strangers: Yo-Yo Ma and the Silk Road Ensemble follows an ever-changing line up of performers drawn from the ensemble’s more than 50 instrumentalists, vocalists, composers, arrangers, visual artists and storytellers as they gather in locations across the world, exploring the ways art can both preserve traditions and shape cultural evolution.

Blending performance footage, personal interviews and archival film, director Morgan Neville and producer Caitrin Rogers focus on the journeys of a small group of Silk Road Ensemble mainstays from across the globe to create an intensely personal chronicle of passion, talent and sacrifice. Through these moving individual stories, the filmmakers paint a vivid portrait of a bold musical experiment and a global search for the ties that bind.

“An irresistible kaleidoscope of music and good fellowship… Finds poetry in the ability of music to bring us home again, wherever we may travel.” Moira MacDonald, The Seattle Times

“A joyous revelation, a group portrait of superb musicians from all over the world offering music as an emblem of what people can do in these fractious times when they live in concert with one another.” The Wall Street Journal



In mid-February 2015, a select group of Festival Singers, with Jonathan on piano, accompanied the groom singing his vows to his bride, at The Pines in Island Bay.



Enjoyable Fundraiser

60+ Magic_in_the_Moonlight_posterFestival Singers members and supporters enjoyed a fundraising screening of:

Magic in the Moonlight on Sunday 31 August


Light House Cinema, 52 Beach Street, Petone

Thank you for your support

The cinema staff were very helpful and accommodating and we can recommend this cinema to other groups wanting to host fundraisers.