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Choir Festival announce internationally-renowned vocal ensemble as first guest artist for this year’s 5-day festival

Choir Festival announce internationally-renowned vocal ensemble as first guest artist for this year’s 5-day festival

Organisers of the City of Derry International Choir Festival are delighted to announce the first of a series of guest artists for this year’s autumn festival, due to take place from 24 to 28 October.

The festival will welcome young, dynamic and internationally-renowned early music vocal ensemble The Marian Consort to perform on Friday 26 October in the beautiful surroundings of Christ Church as part of the festival’s guest artist concert programme.

Known for its engaging performances and imaginative programming, the group draws its members from amongst the very best young singers on the early music scene today and is conducted by Founder and Director Rory McCleery, whose family hails from Derry. Their repertoire encompasses the music of the fifteenth to seventeenth centuries, and the ensemble is also a proud champion of contemporary music, juxtaposing modern-day pieces and Renaissance works in the same concert to shed new light on both.

The Derry Choir Festival concert will include works by Gregorio Allegri, Sir James MacMillan, Palestrina and Victoria, as well as a newly-commissioned work by celebrated English composer Gabriel Jackson that will feature Codetta Youth Choir, who will sing alongside the professional ensemble for the Irish premiere of the piece. The performance will be part of the group’s 10th anniversary tour, which sees concerts throughout the UK in 2018 as well as the release of a new CD recording entitled ‘In Sorrows Footsteps’.

Rory McCleery, Director of The Marian Consort, commented “I’m delighted to be bringing The Marian Consort to Derry for our Northern Irish debut, which for me feels like something of a homecoming! I’m very excited also to be working with local young singers for our performance of Gabriel Jackson’s Stabat Mater, involving and engaging them directly in the highest level of professional choral singing, which is something we’re very passionate about as an ensemble.”

The Marian Consort has given concerts throughout the UK and Europe and has released four CDs to critical acclaim…

‘performances that glow with golden purity and soul’ (The Scotsman)

‘the performances are models of discretion and musical taste, every texture clear, every phrase beautifully shaped’ (The Guardian)

‘sublime – sung with impeccable polish and blend’ (The Sunday Times)

Tickets go on sale for The Marian Consort and all festival events in August. Information at www.derrychoirfest.com.

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