18 October 2012: Arts Council launches new Irish choral music anthology

The Arts Council has today (18 October 2012) launched Choirland - an anthology of Irish choral music, as one of the events this year that marks the Arts Council's 60th anniversary. 

Speaking at the launch, Dinny McGinley T.D. Minister of State at the Department of Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht, said "the repertoire reproduced here is of varying degrees of difficulty, it gives community choirs access to contemporary Irish works, while also offering more challenging pieces to choirs with more developed technical and musical abilities.  It is envisaged that the anthology will promote the careers of Irish composers as well as broaden audiences for choral music."

Choirland - an anthology was funded by the Arts Council is a CD and accompanying publication and focuses on choral works by Irish composers. The project grew directly out of the Arts Council's commitment to supporting the publication and recording of Irish choral music as articulated in Raising Your Voice (PDF, 3.56 MB) a report published in 2008.
Orlaith McBride, Director of the Arts Council said, "The Arts Council is delighted to mark its 60th anniversary with the realisation of this publication of an anthology of contemporary Irish choral music accompanied by a recording of the featured works. The Irish Choral Music Anthology is a highly important initiative in the context of the Council's commitment to achieving objectives set out in the choral policy document Raising Your Voice. "
Three key Arts Council funded music organisations formed a partnership to deliver this initiative: the National Chamber Choir, Contemporary Music Centre and the Association of Irish Choirs.  An editorial group was formed, comprising representatives of each of the partners and a rigorous selection process was undertaken earlier this year which resulted in the final listing. 

Representatives from all three organisations were present at the launch and the National Chamber Choir, under the guidance of its internationally renowned artistic director Paul Hillier performed works by Ben Hanlon, Colin Mawby and David Fennessy, all of which are included in Choirland.

Further information

Choirland is published by the Contemporary Music Centre and you can purchase a copy from their website.

Desert Rose, (oil on board) - Colin Middleton, 1975, Arts Council Virtual Gallery.
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Desert Rose, (oil on board) - Colin Middleton, 1975, Arts Council Virtual Gallery.

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