Cork International Choral Festival To Sing Out Over May Bank Holiday Weekend

The Cork International Choral Festival will run over the May bank holiday weekend

The full programme of choral concerts, performances and a new Fringe Festival in Cobh begins on Wednesday and runs until this Sunday, the 1st May.

The 67th Cork International Choral Festival will welcome singers from all over Ireland, Europe and the wider world to in more than 90 venues throughout Cork city and county.

The winners of Ireland’s Choir of the Year, the IBEC Workplace Choir of the Year, and Irelands School Choir of the Festival will all be revealed over the course of the five days.

Festival Tickets are available on



Just days to go until the Cork International Choral Festival brings the Cork to Life with Colour and Song!

It’s the final countdown to the 67th Cork International Choral Festival which will bring a chorus of music and song to Cork venues and streets this coming May bank holiday weekend! Festival organisers together with a dedicated team of volunteers are presently making last minute preparations as they look forward to welcoming singers from all over Ireland, Europe and beyond who will participate in gala performances, national and international trophy competitions, fringe concerts, workshops, and free public performances in more than 90 venues throughout Cork city and county.

Musical or not, everyone is invited to get involved and participate in the various workshops, events, and performances on offer. Highlights include the annual Big Sing, which returns on Saturday April 30th at 4.15pm to Cork City Hall, one of the most attractive and acoustically superb venues in Ireland. During this fun participative public event, singers of all ages and levels of experience are invited along to be part of the largest choir of the festival, ensuring that everybody is given the opportunity to exercise their vocal cords! The best bit? You don’t even need to be able to sing. It’s simply about lending your voice and experiencing the sheer joy and sense of community that lies at the heart of choral singing. No preparation is necessary either as music and lyrics will be handed out on the day.

Artistic Director Peter Stobart recently unveiled the festival programme for 2022 which promises to not only thrill choral fans but delight people throughout the city and county for five days from April 27th to May 1st, 2022. Here is an overview of the Gala Concerts taking place over the 5 Days of the festival.

Day 1: Wednesday April 27th Opening Gala Concert Handel’s Messiah

The Cork International Choral Festival will be opened by an exclusive Gala Concert celebrating G.F. Handel’s masterpiece, the ‘Messiah’, performed by outstanding soloists and the wonderful Sestina choir from Northern Ireland. The Gala takes place at 8pm in Cork City Hall.
Headlining the gala are Sestina – a dynamic vocal ensemble specialising in the performance of early music. Founded in Belfast in 2011 by Mark Chambers, who remains the ensemble’s Musical Director, Sestina has a reputation for excellence and authenticity in early music performance as well as a fresh and innovative approach to the programming of early music.

Day 2: Thursday April 28th Gala Performance of ‘Re- Wilding the Wasteland’ by Il Fagiolini

A new programme inspired by T.S. Eliot’s The Waste Land, widely regarded as one of the most important poems of the 20th century, is brought to life by talented British solo voice ensemble I Fagiolini, directed by Robert Hollingworth. This thought-provoking performance will feature readings of poetry and classical music including renaissance music, choral works from Eliot’s time and six new commissions. ‘Re-Wilding the Wasteland’ takes place at 8pm at the Cathedral of St Mary and St Ann (Cork)

Day 3: Friday April 29th 7.30pm at St Finbarres Cathedral Chamber Choir Ireland presents ‘A Brief Descent into Deep Time’

Choir-In-Residence Chamber Choir Ireland, under the baton of conductor Paul Hillier, will give the premier performance of the winning composition of the 2022 Seán Ó Riada composition competition ‘Behind This Light’ by Dublin composer and guitarist Daragh Black Hynes. Chamber Choir Ireland will continue with their 2022 retrospective on Steve Martland, with a concert which places the late composer in the context of his contemporaries, John Frandsen and John Luther Adams.
A new co-commission from John Luther Adams, A Brief Descent into Deep Time, explores the ‘space’ between the environment and human culture, and time as measured on a geological scale, passing ‘metaphorically through 1.7 billion years of descent through the layers of the Grand Canyon’ (Adams).
This gala concert takes place in the beautiful surrounds of St. Fin Barre’s Cathedral at 7.30pm.

Day 3: Friday April 29th 10pm at Triskel Arts Centre Latvian Voices presents ‘Sounds of Latvian Nature’

Latvian Voices is a professional a cappella group from Latvia. Using their voices as the only musical instrument, they have developed an individual vocal style, in which the sounds from the ethnic music of many nations intertwine.

Day 4: Saturday April 30th 8pm at Cork City Hall, The Fleischmann International Gala Concert

This exquisite concert will offer audiences the opportunity to hear some of the world’s top amateur choirs competing for the Fleischmann International Trophy, one of the most prestigious choral prizes in Europe. Judged by a panel of eminent musicians and choral experts, the competition will be presented in a concert format and will feature music from Renaissance to contemporary and compositions from each choir’s home country. It is a real opportunity for audiences to discover a range of interesting music sung to a remarkably high standard.

Day 5: Sunday May 1st 8pm at Cork City Hall, Closing Gala Concert

International choirs will present choral music representative of their musical and ethnic backgrounds in a celebratory final Closing Gala Concert. The week will draw to a close and our international choirs will mark the end of a superb festival with a joyful and colourful celebration of song.


New for this year is the Fringe Festival in Cobh which will see two choral concerts featuring visiting international choirs taking place on the May Bank Holiday weekend in Cobh Cathedral (Thursday 1.10pm) and The Sirius Art Centre (Friday 1.10pm). Rounding off this Cobh Fringe Festival will be a pop-up choral trail winding from Cobh Heritage Centre to the Band Stand and finishing in the Rob Roy Bar starting at 1pm on Saturday 30th April and Sunday 1st May.

Also, to be crowned over the course of the festival will be Ireland’s Choir of the Year, The Ibec Workplace Choir of the Year, and Irelands School Choir of the Festival. Cork is the certainly the place to be for the sweet sounds of music in the run up to and during the May bank holiday weekend.
The Cork International Choral Festival is supported by the Arts Council, Fáilte Ireland, Cork City Council and Cork County Council.

Festival Tickets are now live on”


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