International Choir Festival To Take Place In Derry City In October
It has been announced that a choir festival will take place in Derry city in October.
The City of Derry International Choir Festival (CoDICF) will take place from Wednesday October 20 until Sunday October 24 and include both virtual and live events, the latter of which take place in halls and churches throughout the city, as part of a programme of live and digital concerts, performances, workshops, podcasts, and other events.
Host venues will include St. Columb's Cathedral and St. Columba's Church, Long Tower.
Wednesday October 20
The festival will start with an opening gala concert on Wednesday October 20 that will feature members of the Ulster Orchestra with local choirs and singers performing "The Voyage", which was composed and conducted by choral director Bob Chilcott.
The gala concert will also introduce a new festival commission for chorus and orchestra by Northern Ireland creative production company Dumbworld.
Thursday October 21
Derry chamber choir Codetta will perform "The Road Home" in Long Tower Church with Derry cellist Kim Vaughan on Thursday October 21.
The concert will include a world premiere of newly commissioned work by Irish composer Eoghan Desmond chosen in partnership with The Contemporary Music Centre, Ireland, as part of the year-long Colmcille 1500 celebratory programme, coordinated by Derry City and Strabane District Council and Donegal County Council.
School performances with a non-competitive format for primary years will take place as part of the Primary Big Sing event in Millennium Forum on Thursday October 21.
This day of singing will include a workshop led by music education expert Lucinda Geoghegan featuring songs, games and rhymes, and a specially composed piece for young voices by Catalan composer and conductor Josep Vila i Casañas.
Friday October 22
Post-primary schools will be able to take part in a day of competitions and a senior "Big Sing" on Friday October 22.
Choirs throughout the island of Ireland will be able to take part in a day of competitions in various categories including mixed voice, equal voice, youth, sacred, pop, jazz and gospel that will culminate in a Choir of the Festival competition on Friday October 22.
Musical director Nigel Short-founded UK vocal ensemble Tenebrae will perform live in St. Columb's Cathedral on Friday October 22.
The festival's online programme will be headlined by Grammy Award-winning San Francisco all-male a cappella ensemble Chanticleer from San Francisco, California, who will take part in a live Zoom workshop and a bespoke recorded concert on Thursday October 21.
A Virtual Choral Trail will feature local, national, and international choirs, who can take part by submitting their best performance through the festival’s website to secure a place in the online programme.
The festival's online programme will also include a special virtual concert featuring the sounds of previous international winners of the festival, as well as a series of podcasts with guest artists and a virtual symposium on the theme of words, music and composition.
Festival Artistic Director Statements
The festival’s artistic director, Dónal Doherty, stated, "There is a real sense of hope among singers everywhere that we will soon be able to return to regular rehearsals and performances. Singing together is our life-blood and this shared experience has been sorely missed over the past 18 months. We cannot wait to perform together again, or to enjoy the performance of other groups, whether outdoors or in one of the beautiful indoor venues that we'll be using for this year's festival."
Doherty added, "The extraordinary success of last year's virtual festival has given us the confidence to present an exciting and varied programme for Festival 2021. Derry is a very welcoming city and we look forward to an even bigger global audience, either in person or online, being able to share in and enjoy this year's five-day celebration of song.”"
The City of Derry International Choir Festival is supported by Arts Council Northern Ireland, the Department for Communities, Derry & Strabane District Council, Donegal County Council, Tourism Northern Ireland, Community Foundation Northern Ireland, Inner City Trust, the Irish American Partnership and Caldwell & Robinson Solicitors.
© 2021 Hospitality Ireland – your source for the latest industry news. Article by Conor Farrelly. Click subscribe to sign up for the Hospitality Ireland print edition.