On Saturday January 19th, a concert featuring De La Salle College Senior and First Year Choirs and the Laurel Hill Colaiste Girls Choir from Limerick took place at the Sacred Heart Church, The Folly, Waterford City. Over 200 young singers performed popular classics such as The Hallelujah Chorus, The Chorus of the Hebrew Slaves, And So it Goes by Billy Joel, Only You by The Flying Pickets, Africa by Toto, Adiemus by Carl Jenkins, Dreams by Dolores O Riordan and the Cranberries, Close Every Door from Joseph, Something by the Beatles and many more beautiful pieces. It was a night to remember and one could only wonder at the skill, talent, energy and enthusiasm of the young choristers. The combined choirs took on some really challenging music while at the same time making it sound effortless and also attractive for the listener. The big audience loved it and there were several standing ovations.
One wonders how it was possible to deliver such a big programme to such a high standard given that the choirs only got together on Friday afternoon. Well both choirs have fine reputations and are regular competitors in national choral competitions. In fact, they will compete against one another at the Cork International Choral Festival in April. However, there is also a great willingness on the part of all the singers to put in the long hours of rehearsal necessary for a top class performance. But key to the superb performance and to the enjoyment of the young people is Orla Colgan Ahern who was the conductor of the massed choirs. Orla is a brilliant choir woman who can show the young people how to make the music sound beautiful and who also has the special gift of being able to coax just the right sound from the choir. Indeed, she is one of those very special teachers who never has to raise her voice! She was superb on Saturday evening.
Billy O Brien, a past pupil of DLS, currently studying for a Ph.D in performance in the Royal Irish Academy of Music in Dublin, was a masterful and sensitive accompanist. Mrs Pamela Harrison did a wonderful job keeping everything flowing.
A special thanks is due to Eileen Doolan, DP, Shirley Ni Chinneide, Anne O Beirne, Nora Jacob and Liz Power for all their help in feeding the two choirs and generally keeping an eye on things.
It would not have been possible to have had the weekend without the support of the many teachers and parents who hosted the girls. We owe them a great debt of gratitude.
One of the lovely and really special things about this weekend was the return of all of last years 6th years who were in the 2018 Choir. Ten of them sang in the concert, while the three who couldn’t manage to sing were in attendance on the night. Brilliant!!
Well done to one and all. This was a night to savour and no doubt the lovely memories of a wonderful weekend will stay with us for a long time to come.