Sweet Scarlet are coming to Sunday Serenade

Sweet Scarlet, an all-female choir of six, is coming to St. Mary’s Church on Dec. 3 for Sunday Serenade. The group, which is based in Vancouver, will be debuting their winter repertoire and launching their new CD.

Vista Trethewey, an alto in the group, said they picked 12 songs that they felt would be appropriate for an open-air recording session in a church, though there are many more in their repertoire.

St. Mary’s is their first full Christmas concert for the season. Though there will be some Christmas favourites, about half of the show will be from the general winter repertoire.

“We wanted to put people in the spirit but also not give them an overload of Christmas songs on the first weekend of the season!” said Trethewey.

All but one of the members have sung in choirs before, but all felt there was something missing. They wanted to add their own individual flair, “so we take the best parts of being in a choir and add more individual influences to that, whether it’s our pop influences or our jazz influences and we do an eclectic, non-choral repertoire.”

Four members have known each other since they were kids. Three of the members were once in another choir, and when that disbanded, they wanted to start their own group to keep singing. They held auditions for three more members, and Trethewey had known them from school, so she auditioned and was accepted along with two others.

They hold listening parties twice a year and pick songs based on their voices and their interest, once in January and one in June. This year they added four new pieces to their existing repertoire “because there are a few songs that, even though the audiences love them, we’ve been singing for too many seasons so we wanted to retire them for a year!”

The group has been at it for six years come spring, and rehearse at least once a week with additional rehearsals as performances draw near. The six women all have day jobs and have 13 children between them, but they always find the time to rehearse.

“If it wasn’t fun we wouldn’t keep doing it.”

Sweet Scarlet is coming to St. Mary’s Church on Dec. 3 at 2:30 p.m. Tickets are $20, but children under 12 get in free. Tickets are at Tanner’s Books or at the door. For more information, visit or email

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