Consummate singer Silvie Paladino stole the show at Carols by Candlelight.
It was the ‘traditional’ singers who were best at the annual Carols event (although David Hobson momentarily forgot the lyrics to Jerusalem).
But it was Paladino whose pitch perfect performance showed the most class. What a shame television has no room for her skills until the next Carols.
Marina Prior and Denis Walter were also amongst the best acts, proving that the audience loves these favourites with good reason.
‘Newcomer’ Darren Percival got the crowd on its feet with his soulful enthusiasm proving infectious. This man is a true performer. Somebody get him to a Baptist Church, pronto.
Anthony Callea again showed what a standout vocalist he is, but he needs to work harder on his humility for what is essentially a community event.
It would have been lovely to see him duet with Tim Campbell, a gesture afforded to Lisa McCune and Teddy Tahu Rhodes. In fact both duetted as far back as 2008.
Santa, ably assisted by actor Terry Gill, turned on the Gangnam Style, joined by Hi-5. In a week of retirement, two members, Casey and Tim, also gave their final performance. But those tighty-whitey pants were very distracting…
As expected, Humphrey B. Bear was nowhere to be seen here.
Delta Goodrem donned bling as she appeared to be pitching herself as a country singer. Protege Rachael Leahcar seemed to struggle with the range of the material but was a fitting inclusion for Vision Australia.
Such is the prominence of this annual event, that these days it is accompanied by a savage Twitter commentary throughout, with online derision aimed at all the performers.
Brian Mannix added a dash of humour but led some Twitter users to ask whether Rod Stewart had entered the building. Few of them noticed Tottie Goldsmith as one of three Chantoozies getting down on stage. You don’t get that at Carols in the Domain.
Karl Stefanovic couldn’t resist a nod to his post-Logies night (how many years ago was that again?) and Lisa Wilkinson got in all the plugs for her outfit.
Once again the talented John Foreman was the backbone of the music.
I still find it unacceptable that Nine does not bring Humphrey B. Bear to the fore on screen. This is a family event and he is an iconic children’s character and yet he bear-ly makes it to the curtain call. We had cross-promo plugs for other Nine content, and even though Nine no longer owns the Humphrey brand anymore, it must do more to make this a reality.
Nine now has 12 months to achieve this and resolve whatever stumbling blocks are in the way.
However, as so many people are giving of their time, including choirs, musicians and crew, it’s great to see a Christmas tradition reaching 75 years.
Here’s to another 75 more. But maybe not with a Gangnam Santa….
Nine repeats Carols by Candlelight from midday today.