In 2015 Music Generation Offaly/Westmeath launched Singfest, a ground-breaking choral residency that aimed to give young singers access to exceptional musical training and singing opportunities. Presented in partnership with the Association of Irish Choirs, Singfest involved more than 1,000 young singers from primary schools in counties Offaly and Westmeath, and established three community choirs for young people ages 8 to 18. The programme took place over a six-month period, culminating in two ‘Big Sing’ Days where pupils and choirs came together at Athlone IT to perform a shared repertoire in a fantastic celebration of choral music and song.
To get an idea of what the project involved, look back on this brief documentary video from Singfest 2017:
Building on the enormous success of the ‘Big Sing’ in 2016 and again in 2017, Music Generation Offaly/Westmeath has now announced new plans to develop choral partnerships with secondary schools in 2018.
SING OUT – a partnership with the Irish Youth Choir and the Association of Irish Choirs – will offer workshops and additional performance experience to post-primary schools with existing choirs, as well as providing support and advice to schools interested in developing new choirs.
Participating schools will nominate a lead teacher who will prepare a shared repertoire through a combination of school-based and area rehearsals. Acclaimed choral conductor Greg Beardsell will lead the project as Artistic Director while regional rehearsals will be led by Alan Leech (Tenor Vocal Coach, Irish Youth Choir, and member of the National Choir).
At the end of the rehearsal period, singers and lead teachers will come together for the first ever Secondary SING OUT on Monday, 14 May, 2018 in Athlone IT for a series of workshop sessions leading to the big SingOUT!
Registration Deadline: 15 February, 2018
To ensure a high quality singing experience places are limited. Remaining places will be allocated on a first come basis.
For more information about this and other Music Generation Offaly/Westmeath initiatives and events contact:
Margaret Broome, Development Officer
Offaly County Council, Charleville Road, Tullamore, Co. Offaly