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CSO Messiah Choir

Experienced, Canberra-based choral singers are invited to audition to be part of the CSO Messiah Choir.  

The most performed piece of classical music worldwide, George Frideric Handel composed his Messiah in just 24 days, writing morning to night. Handel created a work of such invention, inspiration and timelessness that it has endured for three centuries (and counting), nothing less than an icon of the Western classical canon.

Musically, Handel’s most significant innovation was to elevate the chorus to equal status with his soloists. This demanded choral writing of astonishing power and drama, monumental blocks of vocal sound. The joy bursting from the Hallelujah chorus is second to none; this is music to lift the spirits.

The CSO presents two midwinter performances of Handel’s Messiah on 8 / 9 July 2022, conducted by Simon Hewett with guest artists Chloe Lankshear, Tobias Cole, Andrew Goodwin and Adrian Tamburini. Tobias Cole will also prepare the CSO’s Messiah Choir, comprising vocalists from the ANU Chamber Choir with guests from other choral ensembles and arts organisations.



Date and time
3 / 4 May 2022, 6.30pm – 9.30pm

Lecture Theatre 2, ANU School of Music – Meet at Atticus Coffee on Level 5
Building 100, William Herbert Place, Acton

To apply for an audition, email Angela Lount at and provide the following information:

  • Voice part (soprano, alto, tenor or bass)
  • Brief outline of your performance experience (100 words or less)
  • Contact details for a performance referee (choir conductor or singing teacher).

Please note, participation in the Messiah Choir is voluntary.



Please prepare your vocal parts (soprano, alto, tenor or bass) for all three audition excerpts:

  • And he shall purify (bars 1–15)
  • His yoke is easy (bars 1–17)
  • Amen (bars 1–20)

Download excerpts [PDF 1MB]



The panel will assess you on the following criteria:

  • Quality of tone
  • Accuracy
  • Sense of style
  • Presence



Preliminary rehearsals (choir only)

  • Saturday 21 May, 12.30pm – 2.30pm
  • Thursday 16 June, 6.30pm – 8.30pm
  • Saturday 18 June, 12.30pm – 2.30pm
  • Thursday 23 June, 6.30pm – 8.30pm
  • Saturday 25 June, 12.30pm – 2.30pm
  • Thursday 30 June, 6.30pm – 8.30pm
  • Saturday 2 July, 10am – 1pm

Rehearsals with orchestra

  • Monday 4 July, evening (time TBC)
  • Tuesday 5 July, evening (time TBC)
  • Thursday 7 July, evening (time TBC)


  • Friday 8 July, arrive by 6.30pm
  • Saturday 9 July, arrive by 6.30pm

Successful applicants will be required to attend all rehearsals and performances.