By Claire Corrigan
St. Finian’s College is holding a Gala fundraising concert at the College this Thursday (6 December) at 7.30pm and it is one not to be missed.
The concert will showcase a wide range of musical treats from the school’s very talented students and include a diverse range of musical styles and performance types representing the many aspects of music life at the school.
The evening will feature two school choirs, the school choir and the Schola Cantorum choir, a string ensemble, St Finian’s Harps, the Ukelele Band and a Traditional Group as well as some incredible instrumental and vocal soloist performance.
Music teacher Tracey Flemming said the night would be a celebration of the many talented students in the school both past and present.
“The music will be seasonal but won’t be necessarily all Christmas songs. Every year we do our school carol service for the parents of the students and along with that, a Christmas concert in the a smaller venu – the Gaffney Hall. The parents always say to us that we should take it to a bigger venue and this year we didn’t do our fashion show fundraiser and decided we would do something different.”
She said the idea for the concert took off from there and the gym is currently being transformed into the perfect festive venue.
“We wanted to do something with our students and celebrate them since they are so talented. We are currently setting up the gym which is being kitted out at the moment with beautifully trees and a big stage is being built and it will be really beautiful for the evening.”
Student based concert
Three years ago, St. Finian’s College invited former students Sarah Brady (soprano), Emmet Cahill (tenor), Gavan Ring (baritone), as well well as pop-folk duo Hudson-Taylor back to the school to mark the 45th anniversary of the foundation of the Schola Cantorum and the results were mesmerising.
“This is more student-based. When we look at the talent we have in the school, we realised we didn’t need to go further afield although there will be some past students. What we are also doing differently this year, is that we’ve always had the string group and harps and traditional group but they will actually collaborating so you will have the harps with strings for example. It’ll be kind of classical music meets contemporary and traditional music in a really interesting way.”
Teaching at the school is acclaimed soprano Helen Hassett and talented musician Gerard Lillis who is director of the Schola Cantorum as well as Emer and Daniel Connell who is past student of the school. “We also have Scally who is very involved in the traditional perspective. We also have John Byrne who is a local guitarist and Bozena Panackal on board too. In addition to that we have other teachers and past pupils who will be collbaroting with us for the event. It will be really seasonal, atmospheric and really good fun. We are really looking forward to it.”
The school want to thank their main sponsors AA Music from Lisburn who have been providing them with fine pianos and other musical instruments for many years now. On the evening, they will hold an exhibition in the school Music Centre of a wide selection of both upright pianos and digital pianos.
Tickets are 10 euro and available from the school office or from Fagan’s Toymaster.