Portaferry, Northern Ireland
had a wonderful time performing a recital of songs with brilliant James Baillieu in beautiful Portaferry Northern Ireland at the Portico of Ards.
The annual four day classical music festival called, Festiv’Ards ‘celebrates the best in classical music with first class artists of international repute.‘ The festival kicked off with Irish pianist Michael McHale, followed by violinist Patrick Rafter. The Gala concert on Saturday featured The Tallis Scholars. Sunday brought guitarist Thibauld Garcia and in the evening chamber music with the Ficino Ensemble. Bank holiday Monday started with an organ recital from Daniel Cook and the festival concludes with our song recital.
Young Irish architect John Millar designed the venue PORTICO in 1839. He had trained under Thomas Hopper an eminent London architect of the mid 19th Century. This church was built in 1841 by the Presbyterian congregation of Portaferry on land gifted to them by the local landlords, the Savage family. It is modelled on the Temple of Nemesis on the Greek Island of Rhamnous (although this has been contested) but Professor Margaret Myles of the University of California, and a world authority on that ruin, is convinced of its lineage.
The church building was little changed, apart from the installation of an organ in 1917, until it underwent a £1.5m restoration in 2015. This not only resulted in its structural “salvation” but also fitted it out with 21st Century facilities and equipment. Today the building is still used by the local Presbyterian congregation but it is now under the ownership of the charity friends of Portaferry Presbyterian Church and is a nondenominational building used as an Arts and Heritage Centre centre for the region and a venue for weddings, conferences and events of all kinds.
Hale Village, Merseyside
We held a “Mersey Wave Stand up to Cancer Bake Off” at Hale Village Hall on Saturday 12th May 2018. Raising over £1,000 for the charity and it brought people together from across Halton and Merseyside to enjoy an evening filled with live music and really great bakes!
The evening was jam-packed with musical performances from the Mersey Wave Choir and Young Singers and an incredible 30 bakes were on display at Hale Village Hall made and donated by members from across the local community to support the event. The audience were invited to taste the bakes throughout the evening and vote for their favourite bake. Choir member Mary McDonald scooped ‘Mersey Wave Star Baker 2018’ and said it was a ‘dream come true’ to win with her spectacular fresh fruit victoria sponge.
The atmosphere and community spirit throughout the night was great and it is with all credit to the bakers, choir members, young singers and all the volunteers who so generously gave their time and talents to delight us all with their brilliant musical performances and ‘showstopper’ cakes which filled the new Hall!’ The Hale Village Hall has been serving the local community for over 42 years and in 2015 the Hale Parish Council was successful in gaining a Lottery grant for the building of a new hall which was completed in September 2017.
Mersey Wave Music is now in its sixth year of running weekly music groups in Hale Village. The Mersey Wave Community Choir rehearses weekly on Wednesday’s (7pm) in The Wellington Pub Hale Village. Weekly community events including the Young Singer’s Class (7-19 years) take place at Hale Village Hall on Saturday mornings.
For more information www.merseywavemusic.com
The next chance to hear all of the performers will be at the annual Mersey Wave Summer Concert which will take place 7pm Friday 6th July 2018 at St Ambrose Church, Speke. Tickets are available 0151-558-1255 or online. Mersey Wave Music was founded in 2012 by local opera singer Kathryn Rudge and musical director and pianist Jason Ellis.