Singing in the rain at Cork’s choral celebration

Choirs from across the world made the best of the poor weather over the bank holiday weekend to deliver another successful Cork International Choral Festival.

Singing in the rain at Cork’s choral celebration

Venues across the city were serenaded by groups from Cork, Ireland and beyond who delivered renditions of well known numbers in churches, pubs and on streets across the five-day festival, which finished yesterday.

The event attracted participants from 14 different countries including Belgium, Canada, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, Germany, Ireland, Israel, Norway, Poland, Slovenia, Sweden and the UK.


More than 5,000 performers, 544 international participants and 97 performing groups took part in 112 scheduled events across 67 venues over the five days.

There was standing room only in the Atrium of the Clarion Hotel on Lapp’s Quay yesterday, as audiences lined the stairways to take in performances from a number of choirs over the afternoon.

As the Voices of Cork group, directed by Eamon Nash, sang of the Rhythm of Life, over in the nearby Poor Relation Pub on Parnell Place the Blackburn People’s Choir were finishing another performance in what was a busy weekend.

Students of the Voiceworks Studio Group at Triskel Christchurch on the second day of the festival.

The 42-strong Lancashire group packed in as much as they could during their short visit to Cork, performing in the Masonic Hall, the Bodega and Canty’s pub and the Christ Our Light Church Ballincollig.

The choir also delivered a moral-boosting show on Grand Parade on Saturday for the rain-sodden volunteers campaigning for a yes vote in the upcoming marriage equality referendum.

Liz Beaumont was one of four members of the Blackburn People’s Choir who first visited Cork in 2013 to see if the event was one they should participate in.

Rajaton from Finland moving audiences at Cork City Hall.

“We all knew about the festival because it is held in high esteem. When the four of us came over to do a reccy two years ago we were very impressed, not just with the festival but with the city, there was plenty to do and lots of sight-seeing potential. We knew it was somewhere we should visit,” she said.

A number of national competitions were held across the weekend. Honours were awarded for male, female and mixed choirs, school groups and the prestigious Fleischmann International Trophy Competition, which was won by New Dublin Voices, conducted by Bernie Sherlock. Cork’s Voci Nuove, conducted by Lynsey Callaghan won The Victor Leeson Perpetual Trophy for Ireland’s Choir of the Year.


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