Voices for Hospice concert draws crowds

Some went with picnic blankets while others arrived early to bag the best seats for the Voices for Hospice concert last Saturday. The informal, family-friendly event attracted more than 700 attendees.

The annual show, performed simultaneously worldwide on Hospice Day, was held locally at The Crescent, on Camana Bay’s stunning waterfront and was the location’s soft opening.

Organised by Camana Bay, HospiceCare and the Musical Director of the Cayman National Orchestra and Cayman National Choir, Sue Horrocks, the show was billed as an awareness-raising concert, to highlight the ongoing need for local palliative care.

Concert programme

The 90-minute show featured a mix of light classical music, pop standards, show tunes and Southern African songs by Cayman National Orchestra and Cayman National Choir.

The Singrays a capella group and soloists Bella Rooney and Dominic Cordes also performed.

The opening number was the National Song. Sung by the Singrays it was a great opener. The unusual arrangement, composed by Jennifer Korven in only its second public airing, was one of the highlights of the short but interesting programme.

Other crowd pleasers included the Zulu call and response wedding song Humba Lulu, the rousing rendition of Handel’s Zadok the Priest and the angelically-executed Pie Jesu from the Andrew Lloyd Weber musical Requiem, sung by Bella Rooney and Dominic, a former Westminster Cathedral Choir chorister.

The programme also included I’d Like to Teach the World to Sing, a spiritual medley in 10 parts by the choir and A Whiter Shade of Pale.

A moment’s silence was followed by Acceptance, which was specifically composed for the event by Sue Horrocks.

The show closed with Abba’s Thank You for the Music.

On HospiceCare

HospiceCare’s Medical Director, Dr. Virginia Hobday, later said: ‘Hospice and palliative care is a topic which many people only become aware of when they are personally affected or a friend or family member needs care.

‘The event was a sell out. Hopefully such events will help to educate the public about the free service that is available to all people resident in the Cayman Islands. We are very grateful to all those who give their time as volunteers or businesses and large companies who supported this event and Hospice throughout the year.’

HospiceCare’s Fundraising Manager Jennifer Grant-McCarthy said that the facility’s annual operating costs are approximately $550,000.

‘The donations made as a result of this year’s concert will be felt long after the event,’ she said.

Mrs. Grant-McCarthy added that at present 10 per cent of the facility’s budget is met by government while the rest comes from fundraisers, grants, trusts and bequests.

On-site catering and bars were provided by Camana Bay’s signature restaurant Abacus and by A la Kebab.

The concert’s main sponsors included Walkers law firm, Abacus and A la Kebab. Around 70 small businesses contributed to the event with donations for the concert’s raffle. The gate prize of two nights and brunch was donated by the Westin Hotel.