New Monthly Beginners’ Workshops in Cork!
We are very pleased to announce the beginning of monthly Sacred Harp/shape note singing workshops in Cork. They will take place at the lovely Plugd Records (in Triskel Arts Centre) and the first is scheduled for Sunday, May 12th at 2pm. Here’s the blurb:
Come check out the rich harmonies of Sacred Harp singing in a beginner-focused session at Plugd Records.
The Sacred Harp is a singing book full of music dating from the 16th through to the 20th centuries, sung in four part a cappella harmony just as it was hundreds of years ago (which is pretty cool). You can expect discordance, interesting lyrical content, high energy, very high volume and, definitely, loads of fun. We promise fun.
It is not choral music. There are no auditions. All are welcome. The way the music is laid out is designed so that anyone can pick it up - even those with no musical training or background.
This workshop is for anyone who is free on Sunday the 12th, anyone intrigued by this description, anyone who enjoys singing (even those who aren’t “good” at it!), anyone who likes trying cool new interesting different things with an open mind, and also just anyone.
The workshop will begin with a lesson on the basics of shape note singing by Eimear O’Donovan, followed by a short break for tea, coffee, general rehydration and snacks. After, there will be a session where we will learn a few songs as a group.
In addition, (as inspired by the Portland, Oregon Sacred Harp group) each month a different singer from the Cork group will give a short talk on something that interests them, or something they think worthwhile for a group of new singers to hear.
All welcome. No charge. Bring a friend.
The aim is to meet regularly on the second Sunday of every month, with the second workshop scheduled for Sunday June 9th at 2pm. Of course, beginners are also always welcome at our regular weekly singings, every Thursday at 7pm in Camden Palace.
We hope to see you on the 12th!
P.S. A quick shout out to our friends in Bremen (Germany) and Belfast. Both are hosting all-day singing events on the 11th of May. If it’s possible for you, we highly recommend you pay them a visit. Check out their Facebook pages for more info:
Convention 2013 - Venue Announcement!
We are delighted to be able to announce St. Fin Barre’s Cathedral Hall as our new venue for the third Ireland Sacred Harp convention, this March.
Most of you who have been to either of our past conventions would no-doubt agree that our previous venue, UCC’s Aula Maxima, is visually beautiful but its high ceilings and book-lined walls make for a less-than-ideal singing space. Our own experiences, along with feedback from visiting singers, led us to decided that it was time for a change. We feel that this new room – a meeting space and scout hall adjacent to the cathedral proper – will go a long way to improving the singing experience for everyone.
One of our major fears when looking for a new venue was the chance that we might not find a location with as much history or aesthetic beauty as the Aula Maxima. With St. Fin Barre’s Hall this could not be further from the truth. The cathedral itself is a stunning example of Gothic Revival architecture and will provide a beautiful backdrop to the weekend’s singing, but let us talk a little about the history of its grounds…
It is said that in c. 606 AD, Saint Finbarr (Fionbarra, in Irish – meaning “fair head”) established a monastic settlement in an area known as an Corcach Mór – the Great Marshes. This settlement became renowned as a place of learning and eventually grew, with a little help/hindrance from the Vikings, to become what we today call Corcaigh, or Cork City. The cathedral grounds lie on the very site of that first settlement.
As you can imagine, we are extremely humbled to be able to host our convention on the birthplace of our little city and are very much looking forward to sing with you there.
In other news, we have updated the “Convention” section of the site to include everything
you need to know about the weekend’s festivities!
For full details of the convention and the schedule, visit:
For more information on St. Fin Barre’s cathedral, visit:
If you have been following or attending Cork singings you may have picked-up on the fact that we really, really enjoy the songs found in the sampler packet of a soon-to-be-released tunebook called, the Shenandoah Harmony. It is no surprise then that when we were asked if our convention could be the stage for its European launch we were very happy to oblige. From their website:
Although there may be a few singings that get books earlier, we’ve decided
to make March 2-3 our official launch weekend. Members of the committee will
be traveling to the Northern Shenandoah Valley First Saturday Singing (Berryville VA),
the Ohio State Convention (Dayton), the North Carolina Sacred Harp Convention (Raleigh),
and the Ireland Sacred Harp Convention (Cork) with books in hand.
This has been a long process, arduous but incredibly rewarding. We wouldn’t have made
it without the encouragement, support, and assistance of all of you. So, THANK YOU!!!
and see you in March!
We would like to take this opportunity to wish the ShenHar crew all the best in these exciting final stages. We can’t wait to get our hands on them.
The book launch/singing will be one more thing to be excited about at the fast-approaching Ireland convention weekend. Expect the full details, including venue and schedule announcements to be online in the next couple of days!
Second Ireland Convention Videos Online
You may have already noticed that we have recently uploaded a good many videos from the second Ireland Sacred Harp convention (March 3rd & 4th, 2012) to our YouTube page. These (720p!) videos have been recorded and wonderfully edited by the tireless Séamus Hegarty and are set to the fantastic audio recordings by Danny Forde, which have previously been made available as a free download.
The entire set of videos from the Saturday session are online now, with the Sunday session on its way very soon. We very much hope that you will enjoy them.
Have a look at the preview, below, or see the full set here!
Cork’s Sacred Harp singers are pleased to announce that the third annual
Ireland Sacred Harp convention will take place in our little city on
Saturday the 2nd and Sunday the 3rd March, 2013, with a
singing school on Friday 1st.
This year we will be moving the location of the convention singing and we are very
excited with the prospect of sharing a new space with you. Our venue of conventions
past, the Aula Maxima, while beautiful, has proven to be acoustically unsatisfying.
For us, the sound of the room has taken priority and we are confident that
this will only add to the quality and enjoyment of the singing.
Full details of the new venue will be announced as soon as possible, but those
looking to book accommodation in advance need not worry. Cork is a small city
and the venue is in a very central location - well within walking distance of
lodgings that returning visitors may have grown accustomed to.
Friday 1st March will see the continuation of University College Cork’s convention
tradition of hosting an evening singing school. We are very excited to be able to say
that this year’s school will be taught by P. Dan Brittain, composer of a number of wonderful
Sacred Harp tunes including, 313b Cobb and 481 Novakoski (see the video, below).
As with previous years, the convention weekend will unofficially begin with Cork’s
regular Thursday night community singing. If you find yourself in town a couple of
days early, we warmly invite you to join us in Camden Palace on 28th February at 7pm
- it does us great honor to sing with Sacred Harp pilgrims in our community’s home!
And finally, a nod to the Saturday night social. You will have fun, we promise.
For more information, please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org
Complete Second Ireland Convention Audio Recordings Online
It is with great pleasure that we can finally make the audio recordings of the second Ireland Sacred Harp convention available to all! The songs, recorded, mixed and mastered by the wonderfully patient (and handsome) Danny Forde, can be found on our trusty Bandcamp page.
As with last time, each day has been given its own “album” and both can be downloaded in their entirety, for free, and in an array of high-quality file formats. Alternatively, individual songs can be streamed directly from the page itself.
We are delighted with how these have turned out and hope that you will enjoy them as much as we do. These recordings will also provide the soundtrack for the wealth of videos taken over the weekend, so there’s a lot more to look forward to!
Now, gwan, there’s plenty of listening to be done.
Cork All-Day Singing 2012!
We are very happy to confirm that we will be hosting our
second annual all-day singing on Saturday 27th October, 2012!
As with last year, it will take place in the wonderful Camden Palace Hotel
- our home since the inception of our regular community singing two years ago.
The all-day singing itself will come with the usual perks, including dinner on the grounds and
the obligitory Saturday night social. Those travelling may want to take in to account that
we will have our regular weekly on Thursday 25th (in the same venue) and that we also plan
to arrange an alternate sources/Shenandoah Harmony singing on the Friday night.
Speaking of travelers, there is nothing we would love more than to get to host a big load of you.
It just so happens that the Jazz Festival falls on the same weekend and the city will be absolutely
buzzing! If you would like to come sing with us or have any questions at all, please get in touch!
We look forward to seeing some of you in October!
Full details and schedule.
Facebook event page.
The jinks aren’t that hi or anything. But they’re still jinks, ya know?
Cork singer, Eimear O’Donovan was lucky enough to make it to Camp Fasola in Alabama, USA, earlier this summer. Only just back from the States, she is already planning on heading to the first-ever Camp Fasola Europe in Poland, this September.
Here she writes about why she (really, really) thinks you should try to join her:
Complete First Ireland Convention Videos Online
For better or worse, we have begun to make our complete collection of videos from the first Ireland Sacred Harp convention (March 5th & 6th, 2011) available to all, via our YouTube page. These videos have been re-edited and set to superior audio recordings (which have recently been made available as a free download).
The entire set of videos from the Saturday session are online as of this post, with the Sunday session to follow in the coming days. So, that makes 50 ready for watchin’ right now, with even more than that on the way!
It is our hope that these videos will give a glimpse into a weekend that us Cork singers will always be grateful for. Have a look at the preview, below, or see the full set here!
Complete First Ireland Convention Recordings Online
Our own 4-track audio recordings of the first Ireland Sacred Harp convention (March 5th & 6th, 2011) have finally been mixed, edited and sent out into world.
The results can be found on our brand-new Bandcamp page. There, virtually every single unique song that was sung over the weekend can be heard. The tracks have been compiled such that each day of the convention is presented in album form, with the songs listed in the same order in which they were called.
Both “albums” can be downloaded in their entirety, for free, and in an array of high-quality file formats. Alternatively, individual songs can be streamed directly from the page itself.
It goes without saying that this first Ireland convention was very special for us and the recordings help rouse some truly fond memories. It means a lot to be able to share them with wider community. All going well, the videos will follow before long.
Now… Go! Listen!