The Mayo Male Voice Choir has been in existence for six years, it has grown in strength from 26 to 35 members, and now has a wide and varied repertory featuring many favorites from light opera to popular musical. Our members are mainly from around the Castlebar area, but with seven from Ballinrobe, more from Swinford, Kilkelly and Ballyglass we now truly represent our county.
Under the musical direction of Deirdre Lee, from Kiltimagh, Deirdre has been our musical director since the choir’s inception, an honors music graduate of University College Maynooth, having studied under Professor Gerard Gillen. She has been involved in many musicals and events as musical director, arranged and conducted. Deirdre is a teacher of music, choir and orchestra in St. Joseph’s Secondary School, Castlebar. She has arranged many of the pieces we perform in four part for Male Voice, which were previously not available to us.
Mayo Male Voice Choir at Sligo in November 2006
Our first engagement last season, 2005/2006 was a concert at the Welcome Inn Hotel on Friday 16 September for the Luton Mayo Association who were visiting the West, Our next engagement was on 9 December a concert for the final day of business at St.Mary’s Hospital, this was a great success and a great celebration of the work carried out at this dedicated hospital for mental health over many generations. Also in December our regular carol performances in Christ Church, Castlebar, and at the various hospitals, nursing homes and public performances for local charities around Castlebar.
We were invited to give two concerts in Luton for the Irish Association on Thursday 16 and Saturday 18 March 2006, in conjunction with their Irish Festival Week. We also participate at a performance of Irish music and song on St.Patricks Day in the Luton shopping centre and at a community hall that evening,
Our annual double concert takes place over two nights April/ May each year at the Linenhall Theatre Castlebar. We perform at other concerts in Mayo during the year and came second at the Sligo International Choral Festival in October 2006.
This year we started with a performance of sacred music at Ballaghaderreen Cathedral on Sunday 1 April. Our Annual Double Concert was on the 18 and 19 April 2007 at the Linenhall Theatre Castlebar. A concert in Ashford Castle, Cong, was on Friday 27 April and on the bank holiday week-end, 5 May, we took part in the Kilkenny Choral Festival, and during May we performed for the County Mayo Arts Council at various venues around Mayo. We plan to visit Brussels on invitation later this year and perform at their Christmas Carol Concert with massed choirs, in the city.