By DALLAS SHERRINGHAM
THE Western Sydney choir River City Voices based at Parramatta is starring in a new national TV campaign produced by a leading online retailer Catch.com.au.
The group with the beautiful sound has made it big on the small screen, starring in the new TV commercials and campaign from the major Aussie online retailer.
The choir is being presented as the true voice and look of Australia in the campaign.
The videos, part of Catch.com.au’s ‘Because’ campaign, show the choir singing to a woman returning home, directing her to her Catch parcel on her doorstep using their voices, all while wearing Crocs.
River City Voices General Manager Inara Molinari said the opportunity with Catch.com.au “came out of the blue”.
“River City Voices’ Artistic Director Sarah Penicka-Smith received an email from a colleague who runs a casting agency about the opportunity.”
“Sarah quickly filmed her introduction and luckily, we had some great footage to showcase the choir from a rehearsal we did at Commbank Stadium as well as a great video of the choir performing at the ABC’s ‘Sing Out Sydney’ event back in 2019 pre-COVID.
“The last two years with strict restrictions on singing during COVID really hit the choir hard. We’d only had our first operational year in 2019 before everything had to go virtual with performances cancelled.
“So having an opportunity like this has been a real boost to our singers’ wellbeing and it’s such a fun way to share their vocal and comedic talents of this choir with a broader audience. It’s also provided a rare experience for our choristers to get a first-hand experience of another creative industry,” Inara said.
“Everyone is bursting with pride. I believe the ad director was looking for a choir that truly represented the face of Australia and River City Voices is an organisation that really walks the talk when it comes to inclusivity, diversity and creating a welcoming and genuine community.
“Our mission is to expand horizons closer to home through events that engage the community and reflect its talent and stories so it’s exciting to share that with a national audience.”
Inara said the Croc shuffle in the ad was a big hit with the singers – “they really had some belly laughs during the filming.”
“This kind of exposure, not only showcases the choir’s talents but also pops it out of the stereotype sometimes attached to what a choir is, who belongs to it and what it does? Being a part of this ad campaign also neatly aligned with our philosophy of engaging in unexpected collaborations – which this definitely is.
River City Voices can take you places
“We’re about to run our annual auditions for the 2023 intake and it’s wonderful to be able to say: ‘As seen and heard on the catch.com.au ad’. It gives the choir a unique cache and brings it out from under the radar. Being a part of and supporting River City Voices can take you places”
Choir member Belinda Huang said: “I enjoyed the opportunity to make music in a new context and see a bit of the behind-the-scenes of how ads are made – it’s not exactly the kind of performance you expect when you join a symphonic choir, but we really embraced the chance to try something new and had a lot of fun doing it together.
“It was so exciting to be featured in something with such a wide reach. River City Voices is all about different people coming together to make music in an inclusive, collaborative way and I think it’s amazing that we had this opportunity to have our voices out there and represent Western Sydney on national television for Catch.com.au.
“The first thing we knew about the ad was that it featured Crocs, so we were very curious as to how it would all come together? It’s a bit of an in-joke for us now, we ‘Croc-shuffle’ on and off stage And we got to keep the Crocs afterwards too, so now I have a little reminder of the whole experience on my shoe rack.”
Catch.com.au launched its new ‘Because’ platform using the choir and encouraging all Aussies to embrace the “thrill of online shopping”.
In support of Catch’s rapid growth plans, ‘Because’ gives power to the purchaser and can be the precursor to any online shop. Conceived by creative agency Sunday Gravy, it reminds us that it can be fun to buy the things we want, “minus the guilt”.
Recently acquired by Wesfarmers, Catch.com.au encompasses a broad range of more than three million products across a host of categories and has “garnered a reputation as Australia’s one-stop shop for both essential and feel-good purchases.”
Marketing Director, for Catch.com.au Peita Golden said: “A great brand is built through persistent and enduring platforms – and together with the team at Sunday Gravy, we believe we’ve created something truly distinctive around the innate joy of shopping on Catch.com.au.
“We can’t wait to continue evolving this platform into the future.”
The new ads, shot by the Glue Society and produced by the team at Revolver, feature a host of unpredictable and unexpected ‘Because’ moments’.
“Engaging local talent such as River City Voices ensures the entire campaign is a true representation of the Aussie public,” Peita said
“The ‘Because’ platform is now live across Catch.com.au and will act as a permission-giving statement for users on their retail journeys.”