We know the Score

Christmas Concert – Carlingford 2016

On Sunday December 11th Setanta took their places in their favourite performance venue, Carlingford Heritage Centre, for the annual Christmas Concert. They had been working hard since early September preparing the programme, which this year included The Fantasia on Christmas Carols’ by Vaughan Williams.

Fantasia on Christmas Carols

This is a short work for baritone, chorus, string orchestra and organ. Vaughan Williams was an English composer who was fascinated with English folk music. During his life he collected and catalogued some 800 folk tunes. The Fantasia sees him use three English carols beautifully worked together to give us a real flavour of Christmas and the piece ends with the choir sending out good wishes to all for a ‘Happy New Year’. Our soloist for this occasion was Peter Boyle who gave a lovely, rich performance of the baritone solo.

Solos and Readings

The concert continued with a wide selection of familiar and not so familiar Christmas music which included solos from choir members. Briege Kelly featured in the beautiful carol ‘I Wonder as I Wander’, Clodagh Davies led in ‘O Holy Night’, while Carmel Hamilton and Mamie Warren were also in splendid voice for their solos.

It is always nice to hear some Christmas readings and Mary Murphy gave a truly dramatic performance of 3 Christmas poems: ‘Christmas’ by John Betjeman, ‘Turkeys Observed’ by Seamus Heaney, and ‘A Christmas Childhood’ by Patrick Kavanagh.

This year the special guest was Jennifer Murphy on violin who gave a stunning performance of Zigeunerweisen by Sarasate. She was ably accompanied by Grace Wynne on piano. This was a really special occasion for them, as the last time they played together they were in 6th year in school. It was lovely to see them perform together again.


Thanks to all for a most enjoyable concert and especially to our ‘orchestra’.
Organ/Piano – Anne Quinn & Grace Wynne
Violin – Jane Graham & Helen Mc Ardle
‘Cello – Mary-Jane Sweeney

Following the concert the choir, soloists, family and friends made their way to the Sailing Club to finish the evening with a light supper, some drinks and of course the usual singsong.

A great time was had by all, although it was tinged with some sadness, as we had to say goodbye to our resident accompanist Anne Quinn. Anne has worked with the choir for many years and has been invaluable in so many ways. She always gave of her best, not only with her excellent skills as an accompanist but also with her dedication and commitment which will always be treasured. She will be truly missed.