view:  full / summary

Press Release - The Resos go to New York!

Posted by Kirsten on January 14, 2019 at 5:55 AM Comments comments ()

Canberra based Choir ‘The Resonants’ have been invited to participate in a performance of the American composer, Dan Forrest’s newest major work, ‘LUX: The Dawn from On High’ in New York City. These outstanding Canberran musicians will join other choristers to form the ‘Distinguished Concerts Singers International’ (DCINY) in a performance to take place on 18 February 2019 in the Isaac Stern Auditorium at Carnegie Hall.

The Resonants’ Musical Director, Ms Helen Swan, well known to the Canberra music community, was delighted that the choir had been recognised for their excellence in production of quality choral music. The Resonants was established by Ms Swan in 1990 and is well known in the Canberra music community for their beautiful concerts with a high level of skill and artistic expression. “What a wonderful opportunity for a group of these musical Canberrans to share their voices, skills and love of choral music across the world and to be ambassadors for the Canberra community” Ms Swan said. “The Resonants have performed music composed by Dan Forest in concerts in Canberra and found his music so enriching and melodic. He has an undoubted gift for writing beautiful music that is truly magical”, Ms Swan said.

The performance will be performed with a full symphony orchestra and will be conducted by Dr. James M. Meaders, distinguished in the US and the UK for his choral and orchestral work. The singers will spend 5 days in New York City in preparation for their concert. “They will spend approximately 9-10 hours in rehearsals” says Ms Swan. “Not all of the time is spent in rehearsals, since there is so much history, culture and music to see and hear in New York City. However, the performance is the primary purpose for their visit to the city.”

For information on tickets, group sales or other special offers, please contact us at 212-707-8566 Ext. 307, or

Kaleidoscope: songs from colourful cultures

Posted by Kirsten on August 30, 2017 at 9:40 AM Comments comments ()

The Resonants sing –in their original languages– traditional songs from countries as far flung as China, Japan, Hungary, France, Samoa, North America, Cyprus, and even a Swahili song featured in the video game Civilization IV!

The Resonants are an award-winning Canberra choir, directed by Helen Swan, who celebrated their 25th anniversary in 2015. Come along and celebrate the diversity of choral singing across the world.

Date: Saturday 16 September 2017

Drinks from 5:30pm, concert at 6pm

Location: Belconnen Arts Centre, 118 Emu Bank, Belconnen

Tickets: Adults $25, Concession $20, Child $10, Family $60 (tickets available online or at the door)

Shining night

Posted by Kirsten on June 15, 2017 at 2:30 AM Comments comments ()

The Resonants present... a selection of contemporary American choral music by Eric Whitacre, Samuel Barber, Morten Lauridsen, and more. The Resonants are an award-winning Canberra choir, directed by Helen Swan, who celebrated their 25th anniversary in 2015. Come along and enjoy some beautiful choral music... because some things from America have always been great.

Date: Saturday 24 June

Time: 6pm

Location: Canberra Girls' Grammar School Chapel, Melbourne Avenue, Deakin

Tickets: Adults $25, Concession $20, Child $10, Family $60 (tickets available online or at the door)

Family Christmas concert

Posted by Kirsten on November 7, 2016 at 8:00 AM Comments comments ()

The Resonants, directed by Helen Swan, present a family Christmas concert of carols and folk songs.

3pm Sunday 27 November 2016

Belconnen Arts Centre, 118 Emu Bank, Belconnen ACT

Tickets available online or at the door

$25 adult, $20 concession, $10 child, $60 family

Home grown - Exciting new choral music by Canberra composers

Posted by Kirsten on August 5, 2016 at 8:15 AM Comments comments ()

The program has been finalised and comprises diverse works by Caleb Campbell, Jenna Cave, Ben Cooper, Kirsten Duncan, Veronika Ferfolja, Sally Greenaway, Kenneth Lampl, Stephen Leek, Jon Nielsen, Louise Underwood, Sally Whitwell and Thea Zimpel.

Come along and support musical talent in Canberra at our concert on 3 September!

Selection of pieces for 'Home grown' is underway

Posted by Kirsten on May 23, 2016 at 4:10 AM Comments comments ()

The Resonants received a sheaf of compositions from Resos, former-Resos and other Canberra musicians. Helen and the committee are now considering all the submissions and selecting those suitable for our September program. We'll be announcing the selection shortly so stay tuned!

Call for submissions of 'home grown' music

Posted by Kirsten on April 8, 2016 at 8:50 AM Comments comments ()

Calling all Resos, former-Resos and friends of Resos

The Resonants are performing a ‘home grown’ concert on Saturday 3 September 2016 in the Great Hall, University House at the Australian National University.

This ‘home grown’ concert will present compositions from local Canberra composers, as well as current and former Resonants singers.

As a former-Reso or friend of The Resonants, you are invited to submit a composition for the choir to sing at this concert in September.

Your composition can be a finished work, published or unpublished, or a work in progress that can be considered by Helen Swan, Music Director, and which must then be completed by the end of May 2016. Works of any choral style will be considered but should preferably be for minimum three voice parts, a cappella or with minimal instrumental accompaniment. They must not infringe copyright for either music or text, and there must be no impediment to The Resonants performing the piece in September. Manuscripts must be legibly scored and presented either by hand or in notation software, and can be submitted either as PDF file or hardcopy for consideration.

Please include a brief description of your piece to help Helen to understand and interpret your music. These notes may be used later in program notes. Please send your compositions together with your contact details to Helen or 21 Prescott St Farrer ACT 2607 by 30 April 2016. Helen will consider all submissions in the context of the concert program, and final selections will be made by Helen and the committee. You will be notified in early May about whether or not your piece has been selected for performance and can then negotiate supply of copies for commencement of rehearsals in late May.

Don’t be daunted! This is a rare opportunity for amateur/emerging composers (or perhaps established composers who don’t have a choir on tap) to have their work performed, so we’d love to hear from you. We look forward to performing an exciting program of never-before-heard locally-composed works in September!

The Resonants Committee

Music from the movies

Posted by Kirsten on April 7, 2016 at 8:00 PM Comments comments ()

The Resonants present 'Music from the movies'

A fun family concert of cinematic favourites including music from 'Good Morning, Vietnam', 'Breakfast at Tiffany's', 'The Mission', 'Frozen', 'Avatar' and many more.

Drinks from 5.30pm, Concert starts at 6pm

Saturday 21 May 2016

Main Hall, Ainslie Arts Centre
Elouera Street, Braddon ACT 2612

Tickets can be purchased from Eventbrite or phone Ainslie Arts Centre on 6182 0000 from Friday 22 April onwards. 
Adult: $35, Concession: $25, Child: $10, Family: $80

'Resonance' audio track on

Posted by Kirsten on March 9, 2016 at 4:40 AM Comments comments ()

You can now hear Sally Greenaway's piece 'Resonance' right here on our own website.

'Resonance' audio track on SoundCloud

Posted by Kirsten on March 8, 2016 at 5:50 AM Comments comments ()

The audio track of Sally Greenaway's lovely piece 'Resonance', composed for our 25th anniversary is now online at Sally's SoundCloud page. Thanks to ArtSound FM for recording the premiere performance at our celebratory concert in November 2015.

'Resonance' lyrics

Posted by Kirsten on November 15, 2015 at 4:35 AM Comments comments ()

Many people have asked to read the lyrics for Sally Greenaway's piece 'Resonance', so here they are.

‘Resonance’ by Sally Greenaway

Lyrics adapted from ‘The power of song’ by Kirsten Duncan


A sound begins deep inside.

Softly, shyly, sound emerges,

Whisp’ring, wafting, set adrift...

Fragile ember floating on warm breath

Into the void.


A note so intimate

It carries the self into the unknown.

A spark, the embers combining,

Nurturing the passion to sing.

Voices entwining,

Notes string into melody,

Creative humanity,

Aching beauty,

The magic of harmony speaks ‘cross all divides.

The universal joy,

The power of song.


Thank you to everyone who helped and shared our celebration

Posted by Kirsten on November 15, 2015 at 12:40 AM Comments comments ()

Our 25th anniversary celebration concert went ahead yesterday afternoon with great aplomb. I'll come back to the event itself in a subsequent post but first wanted to thank a great number of people for their help and support, because these events don't just happen.

Firstly, our appreciative audience of friends, family, former members and music lovers without whom, of course, there would be little purpose in singing. Thanks also to those former members who joined us on stage to sing – it was joyous to have such a big sound!

Secondly, our dedicated musical director and founder, Helen Swan for her 25 years of vision, drive, voice tuition and challenging repertoire. Long may she continue!

Thirdly, Philip Piggin, Dianne Libke and the team at the Belconnen Arts Centre who were all so responsive and helpful in hosting our event. It is a superb musical venue in a picturesque location. We'll be back at the BAC!

Fourthly, composer Sally Greenaway for her creative vision and talent in writing such an exquisite piece of music for us in 'Resonance'. Her skill in setting my words to music left many an audience member (and singer too!) with a tear in the eye and goosebumps on the skin.

Fifthly, ArtSound FM for recording the music. We hope to hear it on the radio sometime soon and also to make some of it available on our website. Janet Wilson for her great article about us in the Canberra Times. Peter Hislop for his lovely photography which will be uploaded to our website shortly. Balloon Brilliance for the festive decorations. AddColour Digital and OfficeWorks for printed materials. Flower Joy at Woden Plaza for the stunning native arrangements.

Fifthly, all the people who worked tirelessy behind the scenes for months in advance and on the day to make the event such a success: committee president Allison who had the added burden of moving house just weeks before the concert; Siwan, Tom and Richard for the catering; Eric for wrangling the finances and Dimity for managing ticket sales; Lin for his ever-faithful roady duties; Joey and Bruce for writing and proofreading the program; Phillip for the magnificent cake; Liz for organising ArtSound to record the music.

Finally, all the choir members who helped with setting up, serving food and drink, bumping out afterwards, and all the other little tasks, advice, opinions and inputs along the way, and, of course, your voices! It is the pleasure of singing together that keeps us all coming back each week.

I did a bit too (driving the commissioning of 'Resonance', the graphic design work as usual) for which I was very kindly acknowledged at the concert.

I heard many audience members comment on what a superb concert it was and how much they enjoyed the trip down memory lane. See you all again next year!

Resonants in the Canberra Times

Posted by Kirsten on November 5, 2015 at 5:20 PM Comments comments ()

Helen Swan and Kirsten Duncan had an interview with Janet Wilson, freelance arts journalist for the Canberra Times.

Here's the link to the article.

Viva la musica! Celebrating 25 years of The Resonants

Posted by Kirsten on September 8, 2015 at 7:30 AM Comments comments ()

On Saturday 14 November 2015, The Resonants will be celebrating their 25th anniversary with a reunion concert at the Belconnen Arts Centre. Directed by Helen Swan for the entire 25 years, the concert will comprise a selection of new repertoire and old favourites, premiering ‘Resonance’ composed by young Canberra composer Sally Greenaway with lyrics by long-time Resonants singer Kirsten Duncan, commissioned by The Resonants to commemorate the event. See the poster.

Former members are invited to sing selected pieces with current members, rehearsing in the afternoon before the concert. Download the registration form with full details.

4.30 for 5pm Saturday 14 November 2015

Belconnen Arts Centre, 118 Emu Bank, Belconnen ACT

Ticket includes concert, wine and cheese
$30 adult, $20 concession, $10 child, $70 family 

Music for Remembrance

Posted by Kirsten on May 26, 2015 at 8:00 AM Comments comments ()

It was a beautiful concert in the intimate acoustic of Radford Chapel, for a warmly appreciative audience.

For a short video sample from the concert, visit our Facebook group page

Photo by Lin Clayton.

Music for Remembrance

Posted by Kirsten on May 7, 2015 at 8:20 AM Comments comments ()

The Resonants present Music for Remembrance, Choral works from Schutz to Gjeilo

4pm Sunday 24 May 2015

Radford College Chapel, 1 Chapel Street Bruce ACT

Adults $30, Concession $25, Under 25 $10, Family $70. Tickets can be purchased online or at the door.


Resos on ANCA website

Posted by Kirsten on February 6, 2015 at 12:30 AM Comments comments ()

We've just updated our profile on the Australian National Choral Association website so that people looking for a choir can find us a bit more easily.

Frozen in Summer

Posted by Kirsten on November 29, 2014 at 11:00 PM Comments comments ()

The Resonants present children's songs and Christmas carols, featuring music from the movie Frozen

3pm Sunday 30 November 2014

Australian Centre for Christianity and Culture, 15 Blackall Street, Barton ACT

Adults $20, children free. Tickets can be purchased online or at the door.


Honey Pie & Java Jive

Posted by Kirsten on September 14, 2014 at 8:35 AM Comments comments ()

Sunday coffee with the Resonants

Light choral music at the Belconnen Arts Centre, 118 Emu Bank, Belconnen

11.30am Sunday 14 September 2014

Free entry (coffee and cake available at the BAC kiosk)

'Swoon with Pergolesi, Pärt and Rutter and The Resonants'

Posted by Kirsten on May 15, 2013 at 7:50 AM Comments comments ()

A dynamic award-winning choral group directed by Helen Swan

The Resonants’ performance with associate artists and soprano Louise Page
St Andrews Church, cnr State Circle and Canberra Ave Forrest
Saturday 1 June 2013, 7.30pm
Tickets: Adults $30, Concession $20, Families $70, available at the door or in the online store.

The Resonants are busy preparing for an exciting concert on June 1, 2013. They started 2013 with a Musical Offering concert in the High Court in January, and joined with the Woden Valley Youth Choir and Oriana Chorale in premiering Andrew Schultz’ Symphony No 3 – Century with the Canberra Symphony Orchestra at the celebration of Canberra’s centenary in March.

In the beautiful surroundings and acoustics in St Andrew’s Church, Forrest the choir will perform Swoon – a varied program of choral sacred music. The Stabat Mater by Pergolesi will feature the women of the choir, and a string quartet of well-known Canberra musicians. In a completely different style are two pieces by modern composers, Like a Shepherd by Carl J.Nygard and Vieni nel mio cuore by Jonny Priano. The audience will then be treated to several movements of the Missa Luba, a mass in Congolese style with voices and percussion.

Many lovers of choral music will find the second half of our Swoon concert exactly to their fancy. We open with the Magnificat by Arvo Pärt; the setting of this wonderful text has the listener suspended in time. Finally The Resonants will present the Requiem by John Rutter, in a performance accompanied by solo flute, oboe, harp, cello, organ, timpani and glockenspiel. This work also features soprano, Louise Page. This is a rare and exciting opportunity to hear this work in Canberra.

The Resonants is a dynamic award winning choral group directed by well-known musician and music educator Helen Swan. They have performed with international artists including Idea of North and Suedes Tango in Sydney’s City Recital Hall Angel Place, as well as at the Canberra International Music Festival. They were the ACT Winner of the 2006 ABC Choir of the Year competition and were finalists in the 2012 MusicACT Music Awards – Best Canberra Choral Group.

Download the flyer and invite your friends today!