Carlow Mayor Fintan Phelan and Cathaoirleach of Carlow County Council Brian O’Donoghue presented choir director Matthew Bishop, with a basket
By Elizabeth Lee
MUSIC fans had a real treat recently when St Mary’s Church in Haymarket, Carlow hosted a choir from Iowa, USA famous for their gospel and jazz.
The sanctuary choir of the First Presbyterian Church originated in Davenport, which is twinned with the town of Carlow.
Its members had the idea of visiting its sister city in Ireland, so they contacted concert organizer Anne Farrelly, who organized the concert.
They performed to delighted audiences at St Mary’s, singing their gospel and jazz-influenced music. The Sanctuary Choir is well known in Davenport, providing a variety of great choral music at Sunday morning worship services, including the church’s annual Jazz Liturgy during the Bix Jazz Festival. A new commission from renowned British composer Jonathan Dove has also been included in their Carlow repertoire.
Carlow County Council was notified of the visit and held a civic reception for the choir. Cathaoirlech Brian O’Donoghue and Mayor Fintan Phelan attended the concert before meeting the choir members at the civic reception at Carlow College. The troupe also visited the County Carlow Museum and the Visual Arts Centre.
“They thought they would like to visit Carlow and it went very well. They had a great time, they were delighted with how it turned out. They loved meeting the cathaoirleach and the Mayor of Carlow and really enjoyed the civic welcome. They were delighted with it and felt very welcome in Carlow,” Anne said.
Proceeds from this unique concert will go to the St Mary’s Church Fund.