Bringing communities together through song: the centenary of the birth of poet and hymnodist James McAuley (1917-1976)
Sunday, 12 November 2017 at 2 pm ($25). A Concert hosted by St. Peter’s Catholic Church, 585 Toorak Road, Toorak.
The hymns of James ‘Jim’ McAuley (12 October 1917- 15 October 1976) are sung throughout the Western Christian world. This special concert event brings together singers from three of churches of the Toorak Ecumenical Covenant – St. Peter’s Catholic Church, the Uniting Church, St. John’s Anglican – and other community members, to recreate the sound and atmosphere of community singing of the 1960’s.
Interspersed by readings of McAuley’s poetry, read by friends and descendants, the choir will present a collection of hymns from the “Year of Grace” with music by Jim’s friend and colleague, Richard Connolly. There will be an opportunity to sing along with our combined community choir, as we celebrate the centenary of the birth of this great Australian poet.
A fellow of the Australian Academy of the Humanities, jazz pianist and devoted family man, McAuley has inspired generations of writers and his deep appreciation of theology and Christian liturgy has been a quiet unifying force in society, strengthening bonds through song echoing which have for decades echoed between the churches of the Toorak.
“St. Peter’s Catholic Church is proud to host this remarkable event in homage to a great Australian literary figure and a man of immense faith. The words of McAuley’s hymns resonate now as they did back in the 1960’s, join us for an afternoon of song and celebration” – Fr Brendan Hayes, St. Peter’s Catholic Church
For more information please contact St. Peter’s organist and music director, Daniel Brace on 0412 806 034 or visit www.danielbracemusicasacra.wordpress.com.
St. Peter’s Toorak is grateful for the support of the McAuley Family Trust, and of the musical communities of St. John’s and the Uniting Church, led by Christopher Cook and Jennifer Chou, Curtis Brown Australia, the estate of Jack Carington Smith and Professor Phillip Hamilton.
Featured image: Portrait of McAuley by Jack Carington Smith, winner of the 1963 Archibald prize. Reproduced with permission of Julie Marshall and Owen Carington Smith.