CLARE will be well represented in a choir of over 450 secondary school students from the Killaloe and Limerick dioceses that will give great voice to the Limerick National City of Culture’s programme next Thursday with a first concert of its kind at University Concert Hall.
The students from counties Clare, Limerick, Offaly and Tipperary will form the largest choir ever to perform at the University Concert Hall when they deliver their Seinn 2014 performance on April 3.
The event is unique, not just because of the massive size of the choir but because most of its members will be coming together for the first time ever that morning after rehearsing remotely in recent weeks. Lead vocalists and instrumentalists have, however, met up several times in the run-up to the performance.
The show, which will feature contemporary music as well as a number of classic hymns, is part of Limerick Diocese’s programme of events to mark Limerick National City of Culture 2014.
The dioceses have engaged the services of one of the country’s top composers of liturgical music, Ian Callanan, as musical director of the programme.
Before the show the students will have an early morning assembly, followed by workshops and rehearsal, culminating in the major performance of 22 songs/hymns.
Noirin Lynch, a Pastoral Co-ordinator with Limerick Diocese said, “We wanted to do something reallly special to mark the National City of Culture celebrations in Limerick and the Seinn concert will be a fitting outcome for sure. We started preparations as far back as last September and in November we started working with religious education teachers in the schools.
“It has been a major feat to pull this together. We began by providing teachers with specially printed music books with all 22 songs and CDs with recordings of the pieces for all students participating and a backing track CD to help them teach the music in their schools. That got them off the ground and there is going to be great fun on Thursday morning next when they all come together for the first time.”
Mr Callanan said, “We’ve been pretty overwhelmed with the response as some 21 of the 47 secondary schools in the diocese have joined the programme. The choir members do not have to be music students and the programme is designed so that the music can be taught by a teacher with out any formal music training. Seinn is about learning liturgical music in a fun way. It is a participatory programme where everyone is welcome to be part of the event.”