Tullamore Choir are the National Choir of the Year

Justin Kelly


Justin Kelly



The Navan Choral Festival 2017 proved to be one that the Academy Chamber Choir from Tullamore will never forget. On Sunday, May 7, the Offaly choir scooped the top prize of National Choir of the Year.

The Tullamore based choir came first in the Early Music section earlier in the day with their performance of William Byrd’s “Sing Joyfully,” which they followed up with a lively rendition of El Grillo. The choir then took second place in the Sacred Music competition.

The Navan Choral Festival is now in its 38th year and the pinnacle of each year has always been the National Choir of the Year Competition held on the final night of the festival. The competition attracts choirs from all over Ireland and the adjudicators Robert Dean and Russel Smythe - music professors with London’s Guildhall of Music and the Royal College of Music London, respectively - are well known in choral competition circuits.

The calibre of choir participating is getting higher and higher every year. This year the Academy Chamber Choir performed two very difficult pieces - Daemon Irrepit Callidus and Elegy - to showcase its broad range. 

The group last won National Choir of the Year in Navan in 2012 so it was a badge of great pride for the choir to bring the trophy home once again to Tullamore.

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The choir will be competing in Austria in July, but before they take flight the choir will be featuring in Midsummer Melodies a concert presented by Scoil Mhuire Tullamore, in the Church of the Assumption, Tullamore on June 21st. For an opportunity to hear the choir and it’s repertoire for Austria as well as performances by the students and staff of Scoil Mhuire, we would advise to book tickets early. Admission is €10 and you can reserve tickets through both the Academy of Music and Scoil Mhuire School on 087-9862123.