Celebrating centenaries – Saturday April 6 at St. Patrick’s Cathedral, Dublin

Today (29/03/24) is the centenary of the death of Charles Villiers Stanford, a prolific composer who was born in Dublin in 1852 and died in London in 1924.  Stanford wrote many orchestral, chamber and choral works, as well as a number of operas, but is remembered today mostly for his sacred music.  The Goethe Choir will be marking the centenary by performing three of these works in a concert in Dublin’s St. Patrick’s Cathedral on Saturday evening, 6th April 2024, which will also contain works by Bruckner (‘Te Deum’) and Smetana, marking the bicentenary of the birth of both these composers.

Tickets for the concert are available via Eventbrite.   You can see and hear us singing part of one of the Stanford works in a recent rehearsal at https://youtu.be/Ic4r81hYpS8.

Celebrating Centenaries concert

For our next concert, the Goethe Choir will be commemorating the centenary or bicentenary of three prolific composers: Charles Villiers Stanford (1852–1924), Bedřich Smetana (1824–1884), and Anton Bruckner (1824–1896).  This musical journey through time will take place on Saturday April 6, 2024, at 7:30 pm in the historic Saint Patrick’s Cathedral, Dublin.  The concert will be directed as usual by John Dexter, and will also feature a number of accomplished vocal soloists, a brass ensemble and St. Patrick’s organist David Leigh.

Join us for an unforgettable experience as we celebrate the musical milestones of Stanford, Smetana, and Bruckner.  Tickets cost €27.50 and are available for purchase online at Eventbrite.

Stille Nacht 2023

We are busy with final rehearsals and preparations for our annual  Christmas concert in the National Concert Hall in Dublin on Monday, Dec 11.  As usual, the programme includes a number of international carols – as a taster, you can hear us singing Stille Nacht in a recent rehearsal in the Unitarian Church in Dublin at https://youtu.be/qXT-0qzCy5w.

Tickets for the concert cost €25 and can be bought online on the National Concert Hall website at https://www.nch.ie/all-events-listing/gloria-the-goethe-choir-christmas-celebration.

Celebrating 25 years as Musical Director

During the interval in our rehearsal last Tuesday (7 Nov), the choir was delighted to present our musical director John Dexter with a top-of-the-range laptop computer to mark 25 years since he first started as conductor of the (then) Goethe-Institut Choir.  The presentation was made by chairperson Ann Barrett, who spoke warmly and appreciatively of John’s superb gifts as a musician and choral trainer and of all that he had taught the choir over the last 25 years, mentioning in passing a number of the musical high points that the choir has attained over that period.  You can read Ann’s lovely appreciation here on our website.

Following the presentation, the choir joined together to sing to John (in canon) the very appropriate German song of thanks and good wishes “Viel Glück und viel Segen” – “Good luck and many blessings in all you do, may good health and good cheer be with you too!”

Christmas Concert – Monday Dec 11

We will once again be  returning to the National Concert Hall in Dublin on Monday 11 December for our annual Christmas concert.  This time we will be performing Bach’s cantata “Nun komm der Heiden Heiland” (BWV 61), Vivaldi’s “Dixit Dominus”, “Rorate coeli” by William Byrd and a selection of European Christmas carols.  The choir and orchestra will be joined in these works by a number of solo singers, all under the direction of John Dexter.   Tickets cost €25 each and may be purchased online by visiting the National Concert Hall website .

St. Mary’s C of I, Navan – Saturday 14th October at 7.30pm

For our first performance of the new season, the Goethe Choir will be taking part in a charity concert in St. Mary’s Church of Ireland in Navan at 7.30pm on Saturday evening, 14th October, performing an eclectic range of a capella works of various musical styles and from multiple periods.  Also taking part will be the Navan Silver Band.  Admission is free but donations for the Meath Child Care Society and Navan Union of Parishes will be gratefully accepted.

2023/24 concert schedule

We are very much looking forward to returning to rehearsals on Tuesday 5th September in preparation for our 2023/24 season.  We have an exciting concert schedule lined up for the new season, which includes an a capella concert in Navan in October, our annual Christmas concert in the National Concert Hall in Dublin in December, a concert in St. Patrick’s Cathedral in early April 2024 to mark the 100th anniversary of the death of the composer Charles Villers Stanford and ending with a performance of Beethoven’s Choral Fantasy with pianist John O’Connor and the RTE Concert Orchestra in the National Concert Hall in Dublin in June 2024.

This promises to be an active and exciting season for singers and audiences alike.  More details can be found on the Events page of our website.

Summer concert / United in Music concert

The Goethe Choir gave its summer concert for 2023 on Sunday afternoon 28th May in St. Ann’s church, Dawson Street, Dublin.  An appreciative audience heard a performance of a range of works from multiple countries and musical periods, reflecting the coming of summer.  These included an arrangement of the Irish song ‘Thugamar Féin an Samhradh Linn’ by choir member Mary Kelly, and a first performance of a work by another choir member, Werner Blau.  We were conducted by our musical director John Dexter.  The concert also featured violinist David O’Doherty, who joined the choir in performing the final item on the programme, Haydn’s motet ‘Insanae et Vanae Curae’, with John Dexter accompanying on the organ and Mary Kelly conducting.  Go to the Gallery page on our website to seem some photos of the event.

There will be another opportunity to hear the choir singing when we will be taking part in the ‘United in Music’ concert in St. Finian’s Lutheran Church, Adeilade Road, Dublin 2 at 7pm on Wednesday 14 June, 2023.  This will be an evening of music in support of refugees worldwide – all donations made at this concert will go to the United Nations Refugee Agency (UNHCR).

Memoirs of a Reluctant German

Former Goethe-Institut Choir member Iris Taylor was in the audience for our recent performance of Bach’s St. Matthew Passion in the Church of St. Thérèse, Mount Merrion, Dublin which prompted her to write and broadcast a piece about the work and about our performance of it.  You can read her thoughts via this link.

Iris was one of the first members of the Goethe-Institut Choir, which she has written about in her recently published ‘Memoirs of a Reluctant German‘.  She continued singing until the 1990s  when she dropped out because of illness but has always been a keen supporter.  She now lives mostly in Clifden, co. Galway.

If you would like to see a slideshow containing photos from the concert with a backing track of our performance of the final chorus from the work, go to the Gallery page on our website.