In 2022, The Boite is bringing Stella Savy and Freedom Road to the beautiful Ulumbarra Theatre in Bendigo.
Freedom Road, originally staged in 2011 with the Boite Millennium Chorus, explores the songs of slavery, music that has been the source of hope and inspiration for generations of people. Join us to discover gospel music’s rich beginnings in Africa and its journey from plantation work songs, to church and onto the Civil Rights movement. Freedom Road will dive deep into this genre and celebrate its profound influence on modern day music, culture and politics.
Be part of this un-auditioned choir of over 150 singers working with Stella Savy and a fabulous cohort of supporting artists towards staging a concert at The Ulumbarra Theatre in Bendigo on Sunday May 8th 2022.
Supporting artists will include Deb Clark, Carl Pannuzzo, Tim Neal, Geoffrey Williams, Barry Deenick, Barry Kay and Dani Fry.
Rehearsals will be held in Bendigo (livestream will also be available), beginning with an intensive weekend in March and then continuing on Sunday afternoons over 6 weeks culminating in our fabulous concert. Singers from across all Victoria are welcome.
Rehearsal dates: 2022
March 19th - 20th: Weekend workshop (Saturday and Sunday) - 10 am-4.30 pm both days.
March 27th 2.00pm-4.30pm (Sunday)
April 10th 2.00pm-4.30pm (Sunday)
April 24th 2.00pm-4.30pm (Sunday)
May 1st 2.00pm-4.30pm (Sunday)
May 7th 10.00am-4.30pm (Saturday full day)
May 8th from 10.00am Final rehearsal and Concert, Ulumbarra Theatre, Bendigo (Sunday full day)
*Proof of vaccination certificates are necessary for face to face rehearsals and final performance
Enrolments are open now - link below.
Full $190/Concession $170
For the singer in your life:
Get tickets to the concert!
On Sunday, 5th Dec, 2021 we premiered our Freedom Road virtual choir, 'Just Keep Going On'.
Meet The Artists
Deborah Lowah Clark is a proud Meriam woman of the Torres Strait Islands. Born on Wadawurrung land, Deborah expresses the social justice issues of the Australian landscape through her music, in particular, giving Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander language and culture a space to be seen and heard. Deborah has performed in theatre, been MC for a variety of presentations honouring Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander stories and is a current member of Sweet Mona’s Choir.
Geoffrey is a singer/songwriter/performer with 5 albums on major labels such as Atlantic Records and EMI. He has written songs for Michael Jackson and Dusty Springfield, played at Wembley Arena and in 2017 was crowned Australian National Busking Championships Open Winner. Geoffrey has performed at festivals internationally and across Australia. In 2016 he directed and co-wrote Windrush for the Boite Millennium Chorus and Boite Schools Chorus.
Dani is no stranger to the Boite, she has worked on many Millennium Chorus productions as a regional conductor and soloist. In 2011 Dani co-wrote and co-directed ‘Freedom Road’ with Stella Savy and is thrilled to be given the opportunity to return to the show as a special guest. Dani is currently working as a full time singing teacher and event organiser. On the weekends, Dani is a resident vocalist for the popular music venue franchise ‘Piano Bar’.
Stella has been a vocal coach for over 20 years, conducting groups such as Sweet Mona’s Choir, the Mini Mona’s Choir and Thursday Night Community Choir. Stella has worked with The Boite on many choir projects over the last 10 years, Freedom Road, Mai Fali Eh, Coco de Mer, Windrush and Haven. Stella has worked with choirs and groups all around the world and has an energetic and fun approach to facilitating her sessions.
Graduating from the Victorian College of Arts in 1988 Barry has worked as a professional actor, writer, director, voice-over artist, singer and teacher with the Murray River Performing Group, Melbourne Theatre Company, Back to Back Theatre, Zootango Theatre, Terrapin Puppet Theatre, Salamanca Theatre and more. Since 1998, he has been working at Sovereign Hill in Ballarat, where he has become a specialist in museum theatre.
Tim began playing the Hammond organ in 1991 after selling his beloved VW car to purchase an X-5. He fell in love with its infectious sound and began gigging with it! Tim is part of the Paul Williamson Hammond Combo at one of Melbourne's longest Jazz residencies in Fitzroy "The Rainbow Hotel" as well as his own Tim Neal Big Organ Band and The Tim Neal Trio. Tim has toured extensively and played festivals, locally and overseas, sharing stages with Kate Ceberano and Paul Kelly and more.
Barry Deenick has been a professional musician for 45 years. He has performed with such artists as Ross Wilson, Ross Hannaford, Joe Camilleri, John Butler, Vince Jones, Nicky Bomba and is currently the bassist for the multi Aria award winning Melbourne Ska Orchestra. He was also the founding musical director and conductor for the acclaimed Sweet Mona’s Choir.
Carl is a renowned singer-songwriter multi instrumentalist, eclectic in style, engaging in presence, generous in performance. With 30+ years in soul, jazz, blues, folk and classical, from festivals to pubs, European workshops, stints with Oz Opera, Cirque du Soleil, Bob Sedergreen, Mia Dyson, Paul Grabowsky, Vika and Linda Bull, Opera Australia, Casey Bennetto, Checkerboard Lounge and the Acapelicans. Carl also conducts the Gorgeous Voices Choir in Bendigo.