Conductor and Tain Score

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The Táin Performance

Celebrating 25 years of choral music

This celebratory concert took place on the 7th February 2003 in the Dundalk Institute of Technology. It was a formal but joyous occasion attended by President Mary McAleese and several national and local dignitaries.

It was an opportunity also for many old friends and associates of the choir to join in the festivities of this, Setanta’s Silver Jubilee year.

The main interest of the evening was, of course, the première of Setanta, a choral piece based on the Táin legend which had been commissioned by the choir to mark their Jubilee year in a special way. The composer Dr. Eibhlis Farrell was in attendance

Setanta Committee with President Mary McAleese

In honour of the occasion, the famous Táin tapestries by Louis Le Brocquy were hanging in the auditorium. Choir member Seán Mc Carthy had managed to acquire these for the concert through the good offices of Catherine Marshall at IMMA

A Night to remember

The first part of the programme was presented by the RTÉ Concert Orchestra and consisted of a selection from the Irish Suite by Anderson followed by Potter’s Rhapsody under a High Sky and Harty’s A Fair Day.

The audience at The Tain

There was then an expectant hush as the orchestra struck the first notes of Setanta and the soloist Sadhbh Dennedy sang the haunting opening phrase “My name is Setanta , I sing of boyhood deeds.” The audience gave rapturous applause at the conclusion of the atmospheric piece.

Presentation to President & Mr. Mc Aleese

Nora takes the baton!There was a moment of great hilarity during one of the encores when the conductor, Proinnsías Ó Duinn, unexpectedly left the podium and handed over the baton to Setanta’s Nora Byrne.
Nora Byrne conducting

She rose to the occasion with great éclat and delighted the audience with her bravura performance. It was a fitting conclusion for a choir whose philosophy is that it should work hard but have fun along the way!

The choir commissioned a brooch for the occasion from the local artists Mia Mullen and Gerry Cluskey which was presented to the President by the musical director of Setanta Choir, Úna Murphy.

The same design in the form of a tie pin was presented to Mr. Mc Aleese and to choir sponsors. Each member of the choir also wore the brooch or pin for the occasion.