Choral festival expected to attract thousands to the county

The launch of the 67th Cork International Choral Festival took place earlier this evening, where the full programme for five days of events was revealed
Choral festival expected to attract thousands to the county

The festival runs from April 27 to May 1. Picture: Brian Lougheed

THE 67th Cork International Choral Festival was officially launched in Cork City Hall this evening, where the full programme of events for the popular festival was revealed amid a chorus of music and song.

Thousands of singers and visitors are expected to flock to the city from April 27 for five days of events.

The annual festival usually attracts around 5,000 national and international singers and 50,000 visitors, bringing in an estimated €10m to the local economy.

Organisers are expecting figures to be lower this year due to the current economic pressures, but are excited to welcome choral enthusiasts back after two years of online-only events.

“I’m very much looking forward to welcoming singers from all over the world back to Cork to hear them perform and show them the best that our city and county has to offer,” said festival artistic director Peter Stobart.

“We have a packed programme of events on offer, including gala concerts and a new fringe festival in Cobh. Although we’re not back to full numbers yet, it’s going to be a great reboot after a two-year absence and a huge week for Cork.”

The five-day festival will open with a gala concert performed by the Sestina choir from the North at Cork City Hall on April 27.

Day two will feature a new programme inspired by TS Eliot’s The Waste Land at the Cathedral of St Mary and St Anne. The famous poem will be brought to life by British solo voice ensemble I Fagiolini, directed by Robert Hollingworth. It will include readings of poetry and classical music, including renaissance music and choral works from Eliot’s time.

Chamber Choir Ireland, under the baton of conductor Paul Hillier, will perform at St Finbarre’s Cathedral on April 29 and a professional a cappella group from Latvia, Latvian Voices, will perform at Triskel Arts Centre on the same day.

Cork City Hall will host the Fleischmann international gala concert on April 30.

A final gala concert with international music at Cork City Hall will close the festival on May 1.

Other competitions, fringe concerts, workshops, and free public performances will also take place in over 90 venues throughout the city and county, while the new Fringe Festival in Cobh will see two choral concerts in Cobh Cathedral and the Sirius Art Centre.

“There should certainly be a song for everyone over the May bank holiday weekend,” said Mr Stobart.

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