FRIDAY LAST marked the beginning of the third annual Carlingford Choral Festival and what a success it turned out to be for participating choirs and audiences. The festival was launched on Friday night in Holy Trinity Heritage Centre.
Deansrath Gospel Choir was first on stage and together with Cór Chairlinne opened the festival with a delightful selection of African tunes. Deansrath continued with a superb repertoire that left the audience spellbound. Their rendition of The World's Greatest and Forget You had to be seen and heard to be believed.
Bush Post Primary Choir took to the stage next and performed beautifully under the expert guidance of their choir mistress Ms Kim Lynch. Cór Chairlinne was next on stage and sang a beautiful mix of Traditional Irish and modern and their rendition of Salve Domine was most uplifting.
They were then joined onstage by Deansrath Gospel Choir and together they sang a South African song, Bambelela, and even the audience joined in! Setanta followed and as usual gave an excellent polished performance of a wonderfully varied programme which everyone thoroughly enjoyed. Choirs retired to the sailing club where finger food was devoured with relish by all and an enjoyable sing song ensued with all choirs singing their party pieces. A great night's fun was had by all.
It was an early start next morning for Deansrath and Cór Chairlinne as they walked up to the Slate Rock on Slieve Foy for an open air performance. This was most enjoyable and greatly appreciated by the mountain walkers who were lucky enough to hear the beautiful music. As one visitor remarked, it was like '' The Sound of Music''.
Next on the busy schedule was singing in the Dominican Abbey and Tholsel Street. Our resident choir Deansrath and Cór Chairlinne, along with Cór Chairlinne na nÓg, sang an eclectic mix of tunes which was greatly appreciated by the newly weds who arrived for a photographic session. The street performance was thoroughly enjoyed by all and was another highlight of the festival.
The Saturday evening venue was The Foy Centre and here we were entertained by Cór Chairlinne na nÓg, Cór Chairlinne and Deansrath Gospel Choir. This was the first public performance of Cór Chairlinne na nÓg and their soloists and harmonies were a joy to behold.
Everybody agreed that the X Factor wouldn't compete with what was on offer in The Foy Centre. After an early night it was up to St. Michael's Church for 11.30am Mass. Mass goers enjoyed listening to excerpts of the Liam Lawton Mass and some new hymns which we hope the congregation will learn and sing. It was back to the sailing club for 3pm where the choirs sang in front of a large attendance.
Bringing the festival to a close the choirs congregated in Tholsel Street with the Louth Rose and the Oyster Pearl, not forgetting Santa, for the turning on of the Christmas lights. Both Carlingford choirs sang a beautiful mix of songs.
The atmosphere was lovely and relaxed and very family orientated. Deansrath Gospel Choir from Clondalkin in Dublin was our resident choir again this year and hopefully this will continue into the future. They were a credit to their school and community and we must thank their choir mistress Clodagh O'Gorman and teacher John Doyle for their support in making the third Carlingford Choral Festival such a success.
Donations made during the festival were given to St.Vincent De Paul and The North Louth Hospice.