Edgecumbe choir is delighted to start 2024 season with  "Requiem" by Gabriel Fauré 

and "The Denial of St Peter" by Marc - Antoine Charpentier 

Saturday 25 May 4 pm and Sunday 26 May 2 pm

Church of St George and St John, 30 Domain Road, Whakatane. 

Conductor: Chalium Poppy

Guest organist: Martin Setchell

Soloists: Rodene Blackwell (soprano), Joel Amosa (baritone), Jeandré le Roux (tenor), soloists from within the choir 



Take advantage of Early bird tickets – special discount of $10 will be offered for tickets purchased by 10th Mayonline or at the ‘Good life” shop -  tickets will be $25

(tickets at the ‘Good life” will be available from weekend of 19/20 April)

Tickets price purchased after this date - $35


For tickets - email edgecumbechoir@gmail.com anytime and secure tickets 

In the email please include:

Family name 

Number of tickets

Day - Saturday or Sunday

This email will be replied to with choir’s bank account details and once tickets payment is made in full, tickets will be at the sale desk on the chosen concert day.


Gabriel Fauré "Requiem" 


Fauré began work on what he called “my little Requiem” in 1887 for no specific reason other than “for pleasure, if I may venture to say so”.  He later said that he had “sought to get away from the conventional”, and it may well be that the source of its perennial popularity is its understatedness and lack of the bombast and huge scale of contemporary settings such as those by Berlioz or Verdi. It went through several different versions, with the Sanctusand Agnus Dei movements only being added later. The original scoring was unusual, with divided cellos and violas but no violins (except the ethereal violin solo in the Sanctus) which, together with the organ, created a somber and dark-hued tone to the instrumentation. Parts for kettledrums, harp, and horns were added subsequently, and then in 1900 a scoring for full orchestra was published, full of literally hundreds of misprints and mistakes, suggesting that someone other than the meticulous Fauré must have prepared it. Without this sloppy 1900 version, however, we would not have the Pie Jesu, one of the most famous sections, because Fauré’s original manuscript of it has been lost. The overall mood of this wonderful Requiem is of peace, serenity, and consolation, and it inspired Fauré to compose some of his most beautiful melodies. It was sung as his own funeral in 1924. 


M.A. Charpentier "Le Reniement de Saint Pierre"(The Denial of St Peter)



The motet Le reniement de St. Pierre (The Denial of St. Peter) is a dramatic account of Peter’s denial of Christ, its text skillfully incorporating material from accounts of the Passion in all four Gospels. It has been described as “an oratorio in the Italian style”. Charpentier’s forces are relatively modest, involving only voices and continuo. Nevertheless, he takes every opportunity to intensify the text.  Just before the cock crows, for instance, there is a quartet in which Peter vehemently denies knowing Jesus. Charpentier’s agitated music perfectly captures both Peter’s adamance and the persistent questions and accusations of the other three characters.  Perhaps the most memorable passage in the work, though, is the final section. Over thirty bars long, this is built entirely on a setting of the words ‘flevit amare’ (wept bitterly).  Here the vocal lines weave a dense web of counterpoint, full of suspensions and other expressive dissonances.  This powerful evocation of Peter’s remorse is reminiscent of the final chorus of lament in Carissimi’s Jephte; Charpentier clearly knew this work very well, since he himself made a copy of his teacher’s masterpiece. 


Our organist and soloists for these performances are:


Martin Setchell – organist

 'playing of the highest rank ... all that one could desire' (UK Organists' Review)


Martin Setchell, organist of Christchurch Town Hall, New Zealand (recently called ‘New Zealand’s most widely travelled concert organist’) is an international organist who believes in promoting entertaining and enjoyable music to a wide audience.

Born and educated in England where he was awarded his Fellowship of the Royal College of Organists with both the Limpus and Shinn prizes, he studied at various times with Pierre Cochereau, Marie-Claire Alain, Piet Kee, and Peter Hurford.  After teaching for over 40 years at the University of Canterbury School of Music in Christchurch, he resigned his role as Associate Professor of Music in 2014, to freelance as a concert organist, conductor, writer and music editor, speaker and teacher.

Over the last 20 years he has given many concerts in New Zealand, Australia, America, Canada, Europe, the UK and the Far East. Highlights include the Spreckels organ in Balboa Park, San Diego, the Mormon Tabernacle Organ in Salt Lake City USA, the Hill organ in Sydney Town Hall, Australia, Oliwa Cathedral in Poland, the Hong Kong Cultural Centre, the Oriental Arts Centre in Shanghai, the Esplanade Concert Hall Singapore, Musashino Civic Cultural Hall Tokyo,  Birmingham Town Hall, St Paul's Cathedral, London, St Giles Cathedral, Edinburgh, the historic Gabler organ in Weingarten Abbey, Regensburg Cathedral, and the Bergen International Festival.

He has been honoured by the City of Christchurch, receiving a Civic Award for services to music in the community and the Town Hall organ in particular in 2009, and a commendation for 25 years of service as city organist in 2022.

Edgecumbe choir is warmly welcoming Martin for his first performances with us.


Rodene Blackwell – soprano 

Rodene is a local soprano and is very excited to be joining us for our first concert this year.

Recently she has performed in local show “Opera under the Rakau” in February 2024 as well as Theatre Whakatane’s ”Into the Woods” as Cinderella, November 2023.

She is honoured to be surrounded by amazing talent and hopes everybody enjoys this beautiful showcase.



Joel Amosa – baritone

Samoan bass-baritone, Joel Amosa, completed his Music Degree and Post-Graduate Diploma under the tutelage of Isabel Cunningham and Frances Wilson, in 2012 at the University of Otago. Joel began his operatic career with two leading Mozartian roles: Count Almaviva in The Marriage of Figaro with Opera Otago and Don Alfonso in Cosi fan Tutte with both The Auckland Opera Studio and Opera Hawke’s Bay. 

Joel is an avid member of the Opera Quartet, Operanesia, who gave their first performance in 2014 to raise money for New Zealand Singing School and New Zealand Opera School tuition. Outside of singing, Joel is the Regional Admin Manager for Central Auckland Branch Banking with ASB Bank. 

Joel attributes much of his singing success to Dilworth School. It was there he found a voice and a passion to pursue music to the fullest. 

Edgecumbe choir is warmly welcoming Joel for his first performances with us.


Jeandré le Roux – tenor


Jeandré is a classically trained lyric tenor under the masterful hand of Chalium Poppy.

Originally from South Africa, he was a member of numerous choirs, consistently taking up soloist roles throughout his chorister years.

Between 2010 and 2014, Jeandre performed the South African National Anthem at numerous rugby events over live television, to stadium crowds of around 50,000 patrons.

In 2019, Jeandre completed his LTCL diploma though Trinity College London. He is a current member of Voices New Zealand and an active Tenor Soloist in the local music scene.

He sang with choir at numerous occasions, and we are very happy to welcome Jeandré back again.


Soloists from within the choir


Chalium Poppy - Musical Director


A resident of Mount Maunganui, Chalium has gained both international and national recognition as a multi-faceted musician. He is in demand as a conductor, soloist, recitalist, music commentator, clinician, examiner, and educator.Chalium has brought a fresh look and sound to the choir since taking on its conductorship in 2019. Since arriving in Aotearoa in 2009, Chalium has been the Organist and Choirmaster of St. Peter’s Anglican Church in Mount Maunganui where he has worked tirelessly to build both the parish choir and the music ministry there with a focus on community-facing musical events. A specialist in early music performance practice, he founded and continues to conduct the Scholars Baroque Aotearoa in 2010, a 24 voice chamber choir that regularly performs with NZBarok, New Zealand’s only Baroque orchestra .Chalium dedicates most of his time to running his own private music studio out of his home in Mount Maunganui. He teaches voice, piano, organ, and harpsichord and regularly prepares his students for competitions, exams, and university entrance.