Musical Director – Nathan Byrne

In 2022 the chorale welcomed a new Musical Director, Mr. Nathan Byrne.  Choristers have very much enjoyed getting to know Nathan, who brings his own brand of both joy and jubilation to choir rehearsals. Nathan is an experienced choral, classroom, and instrumental music teacher and is currently the Head of Performing Arts – Events at St Paul’s Anglican Grammar School.  He is also well known for his involvement in community musical theatre in director and vocal coach roles.  

The chorale has been working hard to make-up for lost time due to lockdowns in 2021 and 2022 and all members realise what a privilege it is to work with professionals such as Nathan and accomplished performer Chris Sim at the piano

Accompanist – Chris Sim

Chris has performed locally and in Melbourne for many years, completing her formal music education at the Melbourne Conservatorium of Music.  Chris teaches music theory and piano privately as well as accompanying both chamber and solo engagements. 

Musical Director Emeritus – Jan MacLean

Jan MacLean

Jan has had a lifelong interest in Choral music and during her teacher training she sang with Melbourne University Choral Society, then Yallourn Madrigal Singers under the late Val Pyers, Geelong GAMA Singers and Hamilton Lydian Singers, gaining valuable insights in leading a choir from a variety of skilled conductors. In the early ’70s directed the Southern Mallee Choir in Hopetoun for their first ever Messiah performance. Moving to Horsham , she directed Christmas Choir for several years. She has trained various secondary school choirs and directed many school musicals.

On moving to Warragul in the early ’80s she founded the Warragul Madrigal Singers, which was later renamed the West Gippsland Chorale to acknowledge the wider variety of music in its repertoire. For 26 years Jan directed the Chorale, and has always seen the big picture in preparing the choir for the future. From its earliest years when it began winning eisteddfods, she always strove for perfection and was well known for her ability to encourage the choir to enter into the atmosphere of each piece of music.

Jan made contacts over the years with leading Melbourne conductors such as Jeffrey Crellin, Doug Heywood and Peter Bandy, and thus began a series of cooperative choral ventures with Melbourne choirs and their orchestras. The Chorale under Jan’s direction became part of the musical tradition of Gippsland and beyond.

Her community work was recognised in 1999 when she was awarded an Australia Day Medallion.

Jan stepped down as musical director in June 2010, she has remained involved with the Chorale. Music lovers hold her in deep affection and love and will continue to extend to her their profound gratitude for years to come.