National Children’s Choir to host regional concert in Mayo

Members of the The National Children’s Choir getting ready for their concert next week.

Members of the The National Children’s Choir getting ready for their concert next week.

The National Children’s Choir is a school-based choral experience for primary school children. Affiliated pupils from fourth, fifth, and sixth classes in Irish primary school learn a common repertoire of songs. The repertoire challenges the pupils to perform a broad range of songs from Bach to The Beatles. The choir enables young people to experience the sheer joy and involvement in music and song. The National Children’s Choir aims to foster a love of choral singing among primary school pupils and to enhance the musical education of those involved.

The choir has its roots in European Music Year 1985. Seán Creamer (then a music inspector with the DES ) wanted to celebrate this exciting event in a unique way. His idea was that large groups of children from fourth, fifth, and sixth classes in primary schools would learn and perform a common repertoire in public. He approached a number of teachers with this vision and they willingly supported him. This was the birth of the National Children’s Choir.

Since 1985 more than 90,000 children have enjoyed the experience of singing with the National Children’s Choir at local level. This is a tribute to the dedication and commitment of teachers all over the country. This year 500 children from Mayo will perform in a regional concert in Breaffy Arena, Castlebar. Participating schools for 2017 are St Patrick’s De La Salle Boys' National School, Castlebar; Breaffy National School, Castlebar; Brackloon National School, Westport; Carrakennedy National School, Westport; Louisburgh National School; St Patrick’s National School; Louisburgh National School; Lecanvy National School, Westport; Scoil Phadraig Westport; Carrowholly National School, Westport; and Lankill National School, Westport.

The National Children's Choir is much more than large groups of children singing magnificent music to adoring parents, families and friends on local stages and in the National Concert Hall. It is a philosophy, a way of thinking about and celebrating the children’s musicality. As a movement it absorbs their energy and gives it back in multiples. Local group Coda will be performing at the concert. It is rare to find a group of singers and musicians who can combine strong backgrounds in Irish traditional, folk, and contemporary popular music with an a capella style developed through classical choral music. Coda offer an exciting new perspective on an eclectic mix of musical styles. The regional concert will take place on Thursday, April 6, in Breaffy Arena Castlebar, starting at 7.30pm. Tickets will be available through the schools.

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