The West Cork Choral Singers’ Christmas concert was a festive potpourri, with the choir as a whole performing a seasonal repertoire. In addition, various choir members teamed up in smaller units to sing, play an instrument or read poetry. The variety of the ‘acts’ made for a lighthearted evening of entertainment, with the mulled wine and mince pies adding to the spirit of the evening and of the season.
The West Cork Choral Singers are shown above performing this haunting piece by Gabriel Fauré to a large and appreciative audience at Abbeystrewery Church in Skibbereen on Sunday 2 April. The evening, entitled ‘Encore’, also featured work by Johannes Brahms, Antonin Dvořák and Karl Jenkins.
Annabel Adams on piano and Justin Grounds on violin provided musical backing. Justin’s solo violin accompaniment of the ‘Benedictus’ from The Armed Man was especially moving.
Rosario, Diana, Annabel and Claire in happy mood after an excellent evening of music. It was, sadly, Rosario’s last evening with the choir as she, and her family, are returning shortly to Spain. Rosario provided laughter, great mussel cookery and castanet playing to the choir during her stay in West Cork. A fond adiós from all at the West Cork Choral Singers.
No sooner has the dust settled on their wonderful performance of Stabat Mater than the West Cork Choral Singers are busy again, this time playing host to the Boo Chamber Choir. Boo is a parish on the outskirts of Stockholm and their choir has existed in various forms since the early 1900s. It began life as the Boo Church Choir, then became the Boo Cantabile Chamber Choir and, in 2015, changed its name to the Boo Chamber Choir.
The choir has high aspirations with some 20 committed singers. Musically they place an emphasis on the classical repertoire, including both a-cappella music plus larger choral and orchestral works of both traditional and contemporary composers.
Since 1999 the choir has been conducted by Helena Engardt. Helena studied church music at the Royal College of Music in Stockholm and, since 1996, is also as organist in Boo parish.
So please do come along to Holy Trinity church on the Colla Road in Schull on Friday 27 May for an evening of cultural exchange. Camilla Griehsel who performed so powerfully in the Karl Jenkins work will provide a bridge between the cultures as she is a member of that small band of Swedes who call West Cork home.
Vita, the leader of the Musica Fortuna choir in Turnov (Czech Republic) – where the West Cork Choral Singers visited in 2008 – was in touch with Margaret over Christmas. She kindly passed this on to me.
Hallo dear friend
I wish you and all the members in the choir a good new year. How are you? We here are more or less OK. No big changes in my
family. The choir sings every Monday, some new songs, some new singers. Last year we had no trip abroad. As usual we had 8 performances and concerts before Christmas. Hope to find some place where we could made a trip this summer.
So have a good time, many greetings to all the people in the choir and hope to meet again…
A large number of stalwart choir supporters braved Storm Desmond to see the West Cork Choral Singers at Abbeystrewery Church.
Those who made the effort were rewarded with an evening of beautiful choral music from, amongst others, Haydn, Vivaldi and Karl Jenkins. A few seasonal favourites completed the programme.
Fortified by mulled wine and mince pies the crowd dispersed into the dark night.
The choir would like to thank everyone for their support and take this opportunity to wish one and all a peaceful Christmas filled with music.
Christmas concert: hear and see
Click on the link for a movie of the choir singing Haydn’s Gloria live at Abbeystrewery.
A sound recording of the Stabat Mater by Karl Jenkins can be heard by clicking the link.