Choirs Lift the Roof for First Clontarf Choral Competition
The inaugural Clontarf Parish Choral Competition took place yesterday (Sunday March 11) in the Church of St John the Baptist. The competition took place in two parts with four junior choirs performing in the afternoon and seven senior choirs performing in the evening.
The competition was organised by Nicole Robinson and the Rector, the Revd Lesley Robinson and was open to amateur choirs of at least eight members. Four choirs from Dublin and Wicklow competed in the junior section while eight choirs from Dublin, Wicklow, Tipperary and Meath took part in the senior competition. The judging panel was made up of parish organists, John Rowden and Stephanie Maxwell and parishioner, Dr Orla Flanagan, assistant Professor of Music at TCD and director of the Mornington Singers.
The junior section was won by The Plurabelles who were presented with the junior shield in memory of parishioner William Young. St Brendan’s, Coolock, won the highly commended award. The overall winners of the senior competition were Dolce who were presented with the Alfie and Pam Branagan Cup. With Christ Church Choir, Bray, winning the judge’s discretionary prize in memory of Audrey Flood Maharry.
The aim of the competition was to encourage the performance and enjoyment of hymnody and religious songs and the Revd Lesley Robinson said that the singers were continuing the 150 year tradition of gathering in the Church of St John the Baptist to praise God. She said it was the first competition and looked forward to welcoming choirs back in years to come.
Announcing the winners of the competition, Dr Flanagan said that the judges were highly impressed by the standard of the choirs. She also praised the organisers for the way the competition was run and complimented the lighting and acoustics in the church. She added that the conductors and accompanists had all done a wonderful job.
“The thing that I loved most was the absolute conviction and commitment and emotion of your performances. That is why we sing – to tell a story,” Dr Flanagan told the junior choirs. “Your tone was gorgeous and your faces were great. Keep up the wonderful work.”
The choirs in the junior competition were: St Brendan’s Coolock Junior Choir, The Plurabelles, The Glebe School Choir and Treble Trouble Children’s Choir.
The choirs in the senior competition were: St John the Baptist Parish Choir, Dolce, Christ Church Bray Parish Choir, Rathdown Cantori, Roscrea Community Choir and Kilmessan Parish Choir.