Finbar Wright returns to Abbeyfeale for Jubilee celebrations

Norma Prendiville

Reporter:

Norma Prendiville

Con Daly, Anne O'Mara and Fr Tony Mullins officially launching the Finbar Wright concert, part of the Jubilee celebrations at the Church of the Assumption, Abbeyfeale Picture: Dave Gaynor

Con Daly, Anne O'Mara and Fr Tony Mullins officially launching the Finbar Wright concert, part of the Jubilee celebrations at the Church of the Assumption, Abbeyfeale Picture: Dave Gaynor

A HALF century after the new Church of the Assumption was dedicated and opened its doors to the faithful, parishioners in Abbeyfeale are gearing up to mark the Jubilee Year with a series of events in 2018.

And they are getting off to an early start with a celebratory concert with internationallly acclaimed Irish tenor Finbar Wright on February 9.

Already, ticket enquiries are coming in, Fr Tony Mullins said at a reception to launch the event this Monday. In fact, he told the gathering, one woman rang to book for 12 people even before the tickets were printed.

“I have a very good feeling about this,” he grinned. “It will be a great event in the life of the parish. It will bring people together.”

The concert is the first in a number of events to mark the 50th anniversary,  Fr Mullins added, listing a special Mass, a book and a video documentary as other elements of the parish project. “It is really about building up community spirit.”

The church in Abbeyfeale is no stranger to high-calibre music. Among those who have sung there are Tommy Flemming, Phil Coulter, The Celtic Tenors and, a decade ago, Finbar Wright.

Welcoming Finbar’s  return visit to Abbeyfeale, Fr Mullins pointed out that the concert on February 9 would be his second performance following his return from the US. Finbar, he reminded people, has performed in all the major concert halls around the globe, from the Albert Hall in London to Sydney Opera House, from the Hollywood Bowl to Carnegie Hall. And he has sung with many of the world greats including Dame Kiri Te Kanawa and Montserrat Caballé.

Tickets cost €30 each or two for €50 and come with a special presentation envelope, as the organisers hope  to encourage people to buy tickets as Christmas or Valentine presents. They can be bought in local shops in Abbeyfeale and Templeglantine or ring  089-4356981.