Secondary schools shine at St Joseph’s Lochinvar Choirfest

Six secondary school choirs from across the Diocese came together for this year’s Choirfest, held at St Joseph’s College, Lochinvar.

Now in its second year, the two-day event was attended by All Saints’ College, Maitland, St Bede’s Catholic College, Chisholm, St Pius X High School, Adamstown, St Mary’s Catholic College, Gateshead and the hosts St Joseph’s College, Lochinvar.

The event began with a series of choral workshops led by Nick and Naomi from the multi-award winning acapella group, The Idea of North.

The pair led the 200 students through a fun, enlightening and engaging day of singing as well as exercises and songs that focussed on the blending of voices. This helped the students learn new music and to practice harmonising.

As well as the group work, each choir had the opportunity to perform individually for Nick and Naomi - who then offered constructive feedback.

In a day that was inspiring for all, I found the supportive vibe between choirs particularly heartening.

On the second day all choirs got the opportunity to perform at the choral festival.

The songs performed explored a range of genres and styles. The harmonies were wonderful, the soloists impressive and the choralography was on point.

This year’s winners were St Pius X, Adamstown who gave a beautiful rendition of Amazing Grace, before getting everyone in the party mood with a fun, energetic ABBA medley – Mamma Mia it was good!

This event isn’t really about winning – it’s more about being an important opportunity for the members of secondary choirs to share their talents.

The choir festival is their time to shine and to be able to enjoy that with them is a truly beautiful experience.

No doubt the lessons learned will help over the course of the year when each of these choirs perform at numerous school events.

Photography by Emily Wilson, Anna Kerrigan, Sienna Brinkley, Jacquelyn Richards and Jessica Rawlinson.

Follow on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

Anna Kerrigan Image
Anna Kerrigan

Anna is the Artistic Director of ASPIRE, an audition-based drama, dance, music and creative and performing arts program produced by the Catholic Schools Office of Maitland-Newcastle.