THE Limerick Choral Union return with their annual Christmas production next week, starting the holidays in earnest with a powerful performance of Handel’s Messiah.
The 100 strong community choir, based in the heart of the city, return with the much loved and powerful piece, long popular with audiences.
Lorraine Mac Mahon, secretary of the Choral Union, admits that Messiah is a powerful force that draws huge numbers to the University Concert Hall to see them perform.
“It is a favourite of ours,” she smiles. “It is a powerful piece, but I think a lot of people start their Christmas with it. We do it every second year and everybody loves it, it is a real Christmassy piece and brings things back from gifts and presents and back to what it really was, telling the story of joy and wonder.”
This year the Choral Union will be joined by soprano Roisin O’Grady, who performed for President Obama at the White House in 2011, mezzo soprano Imelda Drumm, Limerick born Tenor Karl Scully and Cork born baritone Brendan Collins, with an orchestra all under the musical baton of Malcolm Green.
“Performing it with the full orchestra is great and every single one of us on stage get a thrill from it. We have been rehearsing nearly twice a week for this and it is great to finally see it come to fruition and it gets us going,” laughs Lorraine.
“Rehearsals are going well and Malcolm is busy with the orchestra as well when he is not with us, so he is a busy man,” she adds
The self funding choir are advancing toward their 50th anniversary in 2014, and are “looking forward to an exciting year ahead”, Lorraine explains.
In the meantime, they are focussing on Sunday, December 8 when they will perform in the UCH.