Welcome to the website of Portadown Male Voice Choir, the oldest Male Voice Choir in Ireland. To find out more read through the following pages, and if you are interested in joining us or booking the choir, you can do so on the contact us section.
Message from the President
Dear Colleagues and friends,
It is an honour and a privilege for me to be President of such a distinguished organisation as the Portadown Male Voice Choir and I am delighted to have this opportunity of adding my warmest congratulations to the Choir on the setting up of its new web site.
Portadown Male Voice Choir is the longest established such organisation in the whole island of Ireland and for 93 years it has not only provided joy and pleasure to countless thousands of people, but it has maintained the highest standards of music making through the darkest times. Participation in the Choir has given fulfilment to its members and enriched the wider community in so many ways. The Choir is well known throughout Ireland as a result of its successful participation in choral festivals over the years and has made its mark further afield with several overseas visits. Music making has enabled the Choir, through the generosity of its audiences, to contribute many thousands of pounds to deserving charitable causes.
Reaching and maintaining the highest musical standards for which Portadown Male Voice Choir is so renowned does not come by accident. I pay tribute for this to the dedication of the members, the work of its officer bearers and committee and above all to the remarkable talent and enthusiasm of its distinguished musical director, Gordon Speers. I am delighted that the Choir goes from strength to strength. It continues to attract new members and always welcomes new ones so if you would like to join this marvellous musical fellowship, please do not hesitate to speak to any Choir member or contact us via this web site.
I wish Portadown Male Voice Choir continued success and thank them for providing so much pleasure to so many people.
In some ways it seems a short time since I last penned a few words to you all. In other ways it seems like a lifetime since so much has happened to turn our lives upside down and inside out.
I am particularly conscious of those amongst you who have suffered grievous loss in the past few months and I send heartfelt sympathy from Primrose and me to those of you whose grief can know no bounds.
I hope that some of you have had the opportunity to watch and listen to the digital recitals from the Charles Wood Festival. There is still time to catch up on these by googling You Tube and using the ‘search’ button to find ‘Charles Wood Festival’.I thought that today’s (30 August) morning service on Radio Ulster was particularly moving with the Reverend Bert Tosh providing insights into the power of music to inspire and uplift, illustrated by excerpts from previous Charles Wood Festivals. Do seek it out on iplayer if you missed it.
In June, in the depths of the lockdown, Rupert Christiansen wrote about the loss of opportunities to make music together. I quote his words: ‘’Singing has always been known to be good for your health – good for the lungs, circulation and heart, never mind the glow of wellbeing it generates.’’ He explained that the 16th century composer William Byrd put it very well when he said ‘’The exercise of singing is delightful to nature. It doth strengthen all parts of the breast and doth open the pipes’’.
So, dear friends, please continue to exercise your pipes because there will come a time when you can resume singing together in a choir which is rightly renowned throughout this island for its musical excellence. We must keep encouraging each other and maintain a focus upon bringing Portadown Male Voice Choir successfully up to and beyond its 100th anniversary.
As ever Primrose joins me in sending warmest greetings and best wishes to all members of the choir, to Gordon and Steven and to your loved ones wherever they may be.
Edward Wilson CBE