Our Lady of the Rosary Parish Kellyville

Notre Dame Folk Choir’s uplifting tour raises the roof in Parramatta


Notre Dame Folk Choir News Story
Photography: Alfred Boudib

On their first national tour of Australia, members of the Notre Dame Folk Choir from the US gave a series of workshops in Parramatta followed by a concert in St Patrick’s Cathedral.

Fifty vocalists and instrumentalists from the choir and guest presenters from Australia joined more than 200 people for a day filled with music, prayer and learning.

The choir’s visit was sponsored by the Australian Catholic University and the Catholic Diocese of Parramatta.

The choir serves the community of The University of Notre Dame du Lac in Indiana as one of its principal liturgical choirs, singing during Mass each Sunday during the academic year in the university’s Basilica of the Sacred Heart.

In addition, choir members lend their talents to dedication services, vespers, memorial liturgies, penance services, weddings, ordinations, and a host of other worship celebrations which form a vital part of the fabric of worship on campus.

Notre Dame Folk Choir News Story
Photography: Alfred Boudib

On Saturday 30 May, parishioners from 30 parishes across the Diocese of Parramatta were joined by people from the Archdiocese of Sydney and the dioceses of Wollongong and Broken Bay.

The event was organised by the diocesan Office for Worship and St Patrick’s Cathedral Parish.

Through examples and discussions, choir members showed how to motivate the assembly's song, how to engage youth through music, how to work effectively in an ensemble and how to expand a parish’s musical repertoire.

There was unity in the common experiences of music and discussion of the differences in Australian and American styles.

During a shared lunch, there was much laughter and debate over ketchup vs tomato sauce.

Senior lecturer at ACU Prof Clare Johnson and Director of Music at St Patrick's Cathedral Bernard Kirkpatrick conducted two workshops that proved crowd favourites.

Notre Dame Folk Choir News Story
Photography: Alfred Boudib

Workshops on Introducing the Catholic Worship Book 2 and How to choose 'good' Liturgical Music each drew more than 50 people.

The choir’s musical repertoire included a modern twist on traditional Irish tunes with astounding vocals.

Following a concert in St Patrick’s Cathedral, which showcased their finest works and enlivened those gathered, the choir led the congregation for the Vigil Mass of the Holy Trinity.

On Friday 29 May, the choir conducted a day of workshops with Catholic Education Diocese of Parramatta and secondary school students.

View a gallery of photos by Alfred Boudib

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