Go around the World with the Sperrin Choir

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WHERE would you go in Carrickmore to take a musical voyage around the world, from Slieve Gallion Braes to America’s Wild West, in a programme of international folk tunes sung by a popular choir? Answer: The Patrician, on Friday 3rd May at 8.00pm when the Sperrin Choir take to the stage to present their Spring performance, “That’s All Folk!”

The Sperrin Choir will also be sharing the stage with the choir from St.Columbkille’s Primary School, Carrickmore who will be performing in front of their local audience with songs to complement the themed evening.

The Sperrin Choir’s musical director, Sam Cuddy, has picked a range of popular folk tunes from the UK, Ireland and the USA for this season’s programme. Sam said, “I wanted to choose folk songs that are well known and evocative, such as “Loch Lomond” and “Whiskey in the Jar”, but also to inject an element of fun from the USA with the Carl Perkins’ classic “Daddy Sang Bass””.

The Sperrin Choir, which has been in existence since 1975, possesses a wealth of musical experience and has enjoyed testing itself when rehearsing these folk classics. It is a cross-community, amateur choir based in Magherafelt, with just over forty members from the Mid Ulster area and beyond. This choir is fortunate in having a group of very talented young singers among its members, young artistes who are already making a name for themselves in musical circles in Northern Ireland and beyond.

Caroline Jones, from Ballyronan, graduated in 2011 from the University of Ulster, Magee, with B.Mus (Hons). At the age of 16, Caroline commenced singing lessons with soprano Marie O’Sullivan, and during her university years Caroline studied under the tuition of internationally recognised countertenor Mark Chambers. She was also a member of the University of Ulster Choir and Chamber Choir. Most recently, Caroline has progressed to the Ulster Youth Chamber Choir which, in August 2011, saw her performing in the Royal Albert Hall, London, in collaboration with the Gabrieli Consort for the BBC Proms. Caroline is also a member of the Derry/Londonderry based Baroque vocal quintet, Sestina.

Gareth Brown, from Randalstown, a postgraduate student at Queen’s University, Belfast, began singing at the age of 15 under the guidance of renowned teacher Lesley Henry and the mentorship of Sam Cuddy. As his love of singing grew and his voice developed, Gareth favoured a repertoire that included German Lieder, Light Opera and Oratorio, and classical musical theatre. However, in more recent times, he has enjoyed performing pieces from contemporary music theatre. Gareth has played a number of lead roles in various musicals and light operas, including Freddie Trumper in “Chess” for award winning company Fusion Theatre, and Camille in Lisnagarvey Operatic Society’s performance of Franz Lehar’s “The Merry Widow”.

These young singers will be performing as part of the Sperrin Choir, and they will also be giving solo performances in which they will be displaying their fine, vocal abilities.

A stirring musical experience can therefore be expected by all who attend the performance on Friday 3rd May at 8.00pm at the Patrician. Entry costs £7, concession tickets £4. Seats for this prestigious event can be booked by telephoning the Patrician on +44 28 8076 0011 and leaving a message clearly stating your name, contact details, the name of the event and the number of seats you require. You can also email on info@patrician.ie.