Kevin O’Carroll’s wonderful choir, Madrigallery, held a beautiful going away – a Bon Voyage – to former member Sile Dwyer who leaves Waterford for France and a new phase in a life for living. There was no false sentiment, no mawkish showbizzy farewell, just glorious singing on a peach of a summer’s day, at Garter Lane.
The white-walled gallery, with Kathleen Delaney’s wonderful and colourful Dress paintings as a backdrop, set the scene for a memorable lunchtime concert, The Sile Show, or a goodbye gig for Sile and she selected the varied programme showing the versatility of this quality choir who exist for the glorious purpose of singing the versatility of this quality choir who exist for the glorious purpose of singing together and sharing that wonderful gift.
The opening Summer is icumen in, was beautiful for the day that was in it, warm and inviting – fine holiday weather. Choir singing is sexy now since the success of various television programmes like, All The Small Things and Madrigallery are sexy too, from the red and pink flashes in Catriona Morgan-O’Brien’s raven hair to Andrew Cox’s luxuriant beard. Madrigals celebrated “my mistresses face” and “I will have a husband” and in humour of the Dwyer’s new home, two quality French pieces. The amazing Cantique de Jean Racine and the deep bell tones of Ubi Caritas where the “Amens” toll out from the Basses.
Church music was well represented by a Byrd, Ave Verum and a 20th century Busto of Ave Maria. A Festival Sanctus was sassy and summery and filled the gallery with happiness. A do be doo bee doo version of It Was A Lover And His Lass.
You don’t mind the sombre tones of Lay A Garland or the Vaughan Williams’ Come Away Death as the group jazzed into a smooth Java Jive and ended with a marvellous David Hayes arrangement of Beidh Aonach Amarach.
It was Sile’s show and Sile and husband Martin’s au revoir, but most of all, it was a summer treat of musical friendship and sharing.
Sopranos – Margaret Cashin, Ger Hartery, Jean Hubbard, Jennifer Kavanagh, Petra Kindler, Katie McNamara, Catriona Morgan-O’Brien, Penny Nordell, Louise O’Carroll, Kate O’Neill, Fiona Wiltshire.
Altos – Jackie Brown, Teresa Cullinan, Sile Dwyer, Catherine Hearne, Elaine Mullan, Deirdre O’Carroll, Sinead O’Carroll, Niamh Prendergast.
Tenors – Andrew Cox, Micheal Griffin, John Kiersey, Cian O’Carroll, Anthony O’Reilly.
Basses – Brian Brown, John Burke, Liam Daly, Joe O’Beirne, Paul O’Brien, Peter O’Brien, Gerard O’Neill, Tom Power, Seamus Walsh.