What an apt title, for a wonderful restaurant of Christmas hopes and values – Christmas Voices – at Christ Church Cathedral. The night was genuine and the choir were resplendent in red robes.
Caroline Reid O’Brien took us back to the 12th century with Wexford Carol, Eoin Power gave us Still, Still, Still a traditional German carol while the choir under Eric Sweeney’s balanced direction bathed us in a Magnificat and the bassline excelled in Rachmaninov’s Ave Maria.
Jim Nolan broke the ice with Kavanagh’s A Christmas Childhood, but everytime I hear or read it, I wonder why his father would be playing the melodeon as his mother milked the cows.
Lynn Saoirse on harp melted my heart with Silent Night and the beautiful evocative, Silver Bells, before Caroline Reid O’Brien, soared high on O Holy Night.
The interval was a treat of mulled wine, friendliness and mince pies.
Jim Nolan gladdened many a heart with J. B. Keane’s Many Years Ago and you know that there is good in everyone – at least at Christmas.
The choir were wonderful on God So Loved The World and Eoin Power was strong as Gaeilge with Do Oiche ud i mBeithil.
Deirdre Long was wonderful on piano for Caroline’s impressive contemporary tales of Liam Lawton’s The Maiden And Her Child. Lynn Saoirse charmed with Cohen’s Allelulia on harp as Jim Nolan reminded us that Christmas is a time of beginnings with Kenelly’s Begin.
Eoin Power gave us the movie magic of 1943 with Have Yourself A Merry Little Christmas, made famous by Judy Garland.
Eric Sweeney swung into action with a jazzy piano touch for the spiritual Soon And Very Soon as the choir enjoyed themselves and all sang the happiest of The First Noel.
Merry Christmas Everyone.