The 10th Anniversary City of Derry International Choir Festival filled the City of Song with 80 choirs from across the world last weekend. Schools, local community choirs, national choirs from across the UK and Ireland, and international choirs from across Europe took to many stages in Derry, Strabane and Donegal performing all types of music from sacred to pop, jazz and funk.
The winning choir of the festival was MASKA Mixed Choir from Latvia who took home the Oak Tree of Derry trophy with a whopping 94.8% mark in the International Competition, the highest the festival has ever recorded. The National Choir of the Festival was awarded to the Lynn Singers from Westmeath while St. Joseph’s Gospel Choir from Mayo and Thornhill College Senior Choir took home the Derry Crystal trophies in the post-primary school categories.
In addition to the competitive element, crowds gathered in the Guildhall Square to enjoy a choral tribute to Derry Girls with a performance of Dreams by The Cranberries, led by singers from eight local post-primary schools. World famous choir The Sixteen performed in the beautiful surroundings of the Guildhall to a packed-out audience and choirs performed across the city in community centres, shopping centres, at the Derry Girls Mural, the Peace Bridge, the Free Derry Museum and more.
The jam-packed programme of events celebrated ten years since the festival had its first edition back in the City of Culture 2013 year. Since then, over 10,000 singers from 28 countries have attended the festival placing the City of Derry on the global map as the place to go for choral singing.