Munster star features in Limerick Christmas concert

Gerard Fitzgibbon

Reporter:

Gerard Fitzgibbon

A CAPTIVATING evening of choral singing in Newcastle West this week will further herald the arrival of Christmas, organisers hope.

A CAPTIVATING evening of choral singing in Newcastle West this week will further herald the arrival of Christmas, organisers hope.

The Newcastle West and District Lions Club will be hosting their annual recital at the Church of the Immaculate Conception this Thursday night, with a number of acts from West Limerick and beyond set to take part.

Headlining this year’s concert will be international women’s choir Allundé, who are based in Foynes, while Munster rugby star and renowned vocalist Damien Varley will also be performing.

Liam Doab of the Newcastle West and District Lions Club said that the event will create a wonderful Christmas atmosphere.

“We want to get people into the festive spirit and give them something to enjoy. It’s getting that bit bigger every year, and the church is a fantastic setting for it. [Newcastle West parish priest] Canon Duhig has been very good to us over the past few years”.

This year’s concert will be the third year in a row that a choir from Cistercian College, Roscrea will perform, alongside choirs from Newcastle West secondary schools Scoil Mhuire agus Ide and the Desmond College.

Mr Doab said that Allundé, a 20-strong group led by Tembre de Carteret, will captivate the audience with their “spiritually uplifting rhythms”, while the organisers are also pleased to welcome back Damien Varley.

Varley, who will be busy this week preparing for Munster’s make-or-break clash with Saracens in the Heineken Cup, is already popular in the Newcastle West area for his coaching work with the local rugby team.

“He’s well known here locally, he’s back at the rugby club training with the kids every Wednesday. You wouldn’t expect him to have the signing skills her has. He does a rendition of ‘O Holy Night’ that would make the hairs stand up on the back of your neck”.

The concert begins at the Church of the Immaculate Conception from 8pm this Thursday, December 13, and entry is free for all members of the public.

Members of the Lions Club and volunteers will be holding bucket collections outside beforehand, with all proceeds from the night to go to the various local charitable causes that the Lions Club support in West Limerick. The Newcastle West Lions Club is an association of local volunteers aiming to help the less fortunate in their community.