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Fingal Youth Choir shines light on darkness

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Some of the Fingal Youth Choir in Germany

Some of the Fingal Youth Choir in Germany

Some of the Fingal Youth Choir in Germany

North Dublin's angelic group of young singers, Fingal Youth Choir, have recently commissioned a choral arrangement of a poignant pop song by Swedish DJ Avicii, who tragically took his own life in 2018, in an effort to raise awareness of the work of suicide and self-harm support charity Pieta House.

'Fade Into Darkness', conducted by Eoin Conway, was first released by Avicii (real name Tim Bergling) in 2012, and the commission by Fingal Youth Choir marks the anniversary of his death on April 20 last year.

Filmed on the grounds of Malahide Castle, the video for the piece was supported by Fingal County Council Arts Office, and was shot just before Fingal Youth Choir embarked on their annual international tour earlier this month.

Consisting of 29 teenagers from the Fingal area, Fingal Youth Choir are conducted by Eoin Conway and accompanied by Bláthnaid Conroy Murphy.

Managed by Dónal Kearney, the choir rehearses every Wednesday in Malahide.

Over the past few years, the choir have blossomed into what is now a dynamic group of young singers, each bringing their individual talents to the collective whole.

In 2017, they were a featured choir at Dublin International Choral Festival, and also sang under David Brophy in St. Patrick's Cathedral.

The choir were also invited to perform for the Association of Irish Choirs (AOIC) in the National Concert Hall, have collaborated with youth choir Junge Consortium Berlin, and have hosted a concert at the prestigious Marienkirche in Alexanderplatz in central Berlin.

Fingal Youth Choir's success can be credited to a team of top-quality musicians and teachers, who work closely with the young singers in Malahide each week.

Fingal Youth Choir is the flagship choral ensemble of Fingal Academy of Music (FAM), a centre of musical excellence in north County Dublin, which regularly collaborates with international artists and choirs.

To date, FAM has built creative connections with arts organisations in Australia, Canada, the USA, the UK, Germany and Spain, and

in Ireland, its educational impact reaches from Cork to Belfast through its Choral Workplace Programme.

As the scope of its educational remit grows - with support from Creative Ireland, Fingal Arts office and the Association of Irish

Choirs (AOIC) - FAM has continued to ensure each of its students benefits from what the group terms as a 'high-value musical experience.'

FAM established the Fingal Choral programme in 2013, and now boasts eight choirs: Cór Fingal; Fingal Youth Choir; Fingal Children's Choir; Fingal Boys' Choir; Fingal Girls' Choir; Grant Thornton Tax Choir; Coro Cervantes Dublin; and EY3 Choir, with more ensembles in the pipeline.

Managed by Dónal Kearney, these choirs have been featured on TV in HBO's 'Vikings', RTÉ's 'The Cherishing', One4all's Christmas TV ad, and the '2017 Beats by Dre' commercial with Conor McGregor.

The Fingal Academy of Music Directors are Dónal Kearney and Michael T. Dawson; Dónal has worked with singers across the UK and Ireland, including Ulster Youth Choir, the National Youth Choirs of Great Britain, while Michael is a Doctoral candidate in Choral Conducting at the University of Southern California.

Due to the programme's national notoriety and the international success of Music Director Michael T. Dawson in many of the most prestigious competitions throughout the world, FAM is regularly contacted by visiting choirs, orchestras and artists for collaborations, master-classes and workshops.

With their choral arrangement of DJ Avicii's 'Fade Into Darkness', Fingal Youth Choir continues to break musical boundaries, while raising awareness of the issues of suicide and self-harm and the tireless work of Pieta House.

Fingal Independent