Seven Towers Choir concerts packed out

Patrick Connor and Sarah McIlhagga with their singing teacher, Tracey Martin.  Patrick and Sarah are pupils at Cambridge House Grammar School and were guest performers at the  ecent Seven Towers Male Voice Choir Concert. (Submitted Picture).
Patrick Connor and Sarah McIlhagga with their singing teacher, Tracey Martin. Patrick and Sarah are pupils at Cambridge House Grammar School and were guest performers at the ecent Seven Towers Male Voice Choir Concert. (Submitted Picture).

The Seven Towers Male Voice Choir attracted capacity crowds to their 2016 annual concert two nights running at the Braid.

Guest artists at the popular music event, held this year on April 8 and 9, were vocal harmony group the “Leading Ladies” and two young local singers, Sarah McIlhagga and Patrick Connor.

Mayor of Mid & East Antrim Cllr Billy Ashe hosted a reception for members of the Seven Towers Male Voice Choir before their annual concert in the Braid Arts Centre. Cllr Ashe is seen here with Chairman Derek Murdoch and soloists Lynn McAllister (left) and Ciara Grehan. 
Back, L-R, Rae Shields (Accompanist), Sarah McIlhagga (soloist), Stephen Francey (of sponsors Wrightgroup), Patrick Conor (soloist), Thelma Strange (musical director). INBT 15-101JC

Mayor of Mid & East Antrim Cllr Billy Ashe hosted a reception for members of the Seven Towers Male Voice Choir before their annual concert in the Braid Arts Centre. Cllr Ashe is seen here with Chairman Derek Murdoch and soloists Lynn McAllister (left) and Ciara Grehan. Back, L-R, Rae Shields (Accompanist), Sarah McIlhagga (soloist), Stephen Francey (of sponsors Wrightgroup), Patrick Conor (soloist), Thelma Strange (musical director). INBT 15-101JC

The Seven Towers concert now regularly provides a platform for some young local talent and this year was no exception.

Sarah McIlhagga and Patrick Connor, both sixth formers at Cambridge House Grammar School, wowed the audience with their stage presence and vocal ability.

Their confidence, professionalism and flawless delivery were truly exceptional – beautifully demonstrated through the wide range of pieces they had chosen to perform including duets of ‘You Raise me Up’ and ‘Anything You can do’.

Individual performances included Patrick’s superb rendition of ‘Master of the House’ and Sarah’s haunting performance of ‘Don’t cry for me Argentina’.

Normally a trio, the “Leading Ladies” numbers were reduced due to illness but this failed to diminish the quality and entertainment value of their performances and audiences were treated to a wide variety of pieces including ‘Over the Rainbow’, and ‘I Dreamed a Dream’ from Les Miserables.

Despite being a little down in numbers, the Male Voice Choir confidently performed a wide repertoire of pieces including traditional airs, spirituals and songs from stage and screen.

A Cole Porter medley opened the show with a range of toe tapping numbers including ‘Who wants to be a Millionaire’ and the first half was rounded off with a lively rendition of ‘This little light of Mine’.

The second half included a series of real crowd pleasers including ‘Spanish Eyes’, however, the choir performance of the night was undoubtedly an a cappella rendition of ‘The White Rose’.

Musical Director, Thelma Strange and accompanist Rae Shiels must take their share of the praise for the success of the two-night run and compere - the choir’s chairman, Derek Murdoch, and his team of volunteers congratulated for yet another wonderful show. Thanks have also been extended by the Choir to the sponsors, principally the Wright Group, for their generous support.