The program, which will include other musical tributes to the Mother of God, will be performed by a massed choir, including Knock Choirs with a full orchestra led by Niamh Crowley (some 150 people in total) drawn almost entirely from the communities of Mayo, Roscommon and Sligo. The Concert will be conducted by Cormac O’Duffy and will involve participation of the congregation. Soloists featured include the young Irish tenor Eoin Hynes, soprano Helene Hutchinson, together with tenor Rowan O’Duffy.
The Archbishop of Tuam, Dr Michael Neary is the Patron of the event which will raise much needed funds for the Mayo-Roscommon Hospice Foundation, who exists to provide palliative care services to people with life limiting illnesses and their families in County Mayo and County Roscommon. The Foundation affirms life, respecting the uniqueness of each individual, by caring and supporting to meet the physical and emotional needs of patients and their families living with life threatening illnesses. The Service enables patients to live out the remainder of their lives in comfort and dignity. The Palliative Care Service is provided free of charge to all.
Archbishop Michael Neary, said:
[blockquote animation=”” author=”” ]It is with great pleasure that I have agreed to be the Patron of the Event covering the first performance of the ‘Mary’ Oratorio, composed by Cormac O’Duffy, at the National Shrine of Mary in Knock on 20th May 2017. This wonderful event will bring together choirs and orchestra from Mayo, Roscommoon, Sligo and other counties, with some 120 singers and an orchestra and is an evening of music and song to honour Mary, the Mother of God at the newly dedicated Shrine in Knock. My blessings to all those involved in the preparation for this Event and a successful and memorable evening.[/blockquote]
Cynthia Clampett, CEO of Mayo Roscommon Hospice said:
[blockquote animation=”” author=”” ]We are very pleased to be the charity chosen to benefit from the proceeds of this World premiere musical event. We wish the organizing committee all the best in their endeavours and we look forward to attending this very exciting permiere in May 2017. We are grateful to Fr Richard Gibbons for hosting this very special event at the Basilica at Knock Shrine. We encourage all our Hospice supporters to mark the date and ensure they don’t miss this wonderful opportunity to experience Cormac O’Duffy’s creation.[/blockquote]
Fr Richard Gibbons, Rector of Knock Basilica said:
[blockquote animation=”” author=”” ]I am delighted to welcome the performance of the Premiere of the ‘Mary’ Oratorio at Knock on 20th May 2017 involving the Knock Choirs, local choirs and an orchestra mainly drawn from Mayo, Roscommon and Sligo. It will be a wonderful community event and will be a fitting occasion for the newly refurbished Basilica.[/blockquote]
Archbishop Neary is expected to be joined by the Primate of All Ireland, Archbishop Eamon Martin together with Church of Ireland Bishop of Tuam, Killala and Achonry, Patrick Rooke. It is hoped other Western Bishops, political and public figures will also attend. The goal is to raise funds from this event for the Mayo Roscommon Hospice through ticket sales, donations and sponsorship. Cormac O’Duffy and Una Nolan, Music Director at Knock seek further Choirs who wish to join this massed choir. Una said, after the success of the recent Concert for Peace at Knock on May 14th was attended by over two thousand people, [blockquote animation=”” author=”” ]We are so glad to see the wonderful Basilica at Knock being opened up to give large scale music performances. We hope that using it for such music events will bring encouragement to the many worshippers and pilgrims who visit Knock.[/blockquote]
Tickets for the event will be priced at €25 and will be available second half November for purchase on line at Eventbrite: www.eventbrite.ie, the Hospice Office in Knock as well as at all Mayo Roscommon Hospice Shop outlets through the county. The event will be featured on Facebook, local newspapers, local radio stations, and digital media, and posters will be circulated to all sales outlets and in public places, and parish churches.