In 2018, Tasmania’s Festival of Voices introduced Voices at 5, a series of short concerts designed to make vocal music accessible to the whole community. The initial plan was five concerts at five o’clock for $5. The series was a success, and although the ‘five’ theme has gone a little awry, the series has proved so popular that it has become a fixture. The 2021 series is actually six concerts at 5 o’clock for $10, but the spirit remains the same. From 2 – 9 July, people from all walks of life will drop in to the Hobart Town Hall to listen to an hour of music provided by vocal ensembles from all over Australia.

Allegri Ensemble Allegri Ensemble. Photo supplied

In previous years the Festival has hosted international as well as national ensembles. Thanks to travel restrictions, this year Voices at 5 will be a celebration of Australian vocal excellence. Tasmania, especially, has a unique opportunity to showcase its rich and varied vocal tradition.

Most of the Voices at 5 concerts feature two ensembles. Pairings are carefully crafted by Joan...