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Dublin International Choral Festival


FESTIVAL DATES

March 19-23, 2020

Welcome to Dublin

Perform in some of Dublin’s most historic and beautiful venues at the Dublin International Choral Festival. Meet musicians from around the world and share your music together. Come see why Ireland is one of the friendliest places on Earth!

The majestic St. Patrick’s Cathedral, both the largest and tallest church in all of Ireland, is a fitting backdrop for an unforgettable musical experience. Share your voices with choirs from Ireland and all over the world; sing your own repertoire for each other, and join together to dazzle a local audience with Händel’s Messiah.

Your festival itinerary will also expose you to two facets of Irish culture: sophisticated, cosmopolitan energy, in the lively city of Dublin; and extraordinary natural beauty, while in the picturesque countryside of County Wicklow. Both urban and rural Irish landscapes are steeped in history. You will tread in the footsteps of past generations as you admire the Book of Kells at Dublin’s Trinity College. Explore the walking trails in the monastic settlement of Glendalough. Above all, as you sing and take in the sights, you are sure to note the warmth and joy of the Irish people. Fáilte!

Itinerary

March 19-23, 2020


WEDNESDAY, MARCH 18, 2020 | DEPART NORTH AMERICA

Depart North America this evening on an overnight flight to Dublin. Dinner and snacks will be served on your flight.



THURSDAY, MARCH 19, 2020 | WELCOME TO DUBLIN, IRELAND

Morning arrival in Dublin, Ireland. Upon arrival in Dublin, your Music Contact International tour manager will greet your choir at the airport.

Embark on a guided tour of Dublin’s city center with a friendly local guide. Travel along the north and south sides of the River Liffey to see such sights as the General Post Office, O’Connell Street, the Customs House, and vast Georgian squares like Merrion Square

Visit Trinity College, the oldest and most prestigious university in Ireland, founded in 1592 by Queen Elizabeth I. See the college’s most prized possession, the world famous Book of Kells. Dating from around 800 AD, it is one of the oldest books in the world.

Later, transfer to Dublin City Hall for the welcome reception of the Dublin International Choral Festival. Enjoy listening to a performance by an Irish choir followed by time to mingle and exchange with other participating ensembles.

A welcome dinner is planned for your choir at the hotel this evening.




FRIDAY, MARCH 20, 2020 | COUNTY WICKLOW | FRIENDSHIP CONCERT

Following breakfast in the hotel, travel south from Dublin into County Wicklow, the “Garden of Ireland.” This region features all the types of scenery that make Ireland so beautiful.

Visit Powerscourt Gardens, a magnificent example of aristocratic gardens from the 19th century. The gardens have stunning features including the Triton pool with its 100-foot fountain; winged horses flanking a grotto; American, Italian and Japanese gardens; and the famous Bamberg Gates.

Continue on to visit Glendalough, a 6th-century monastic site.  It was here that St. Kevin founded a monastery which grew to become a famous center of learning throughout Europe.

Return to Dublin late this afternoon. Tonight, your choir will perform a friendship concert with other visiting and Irish choirs. The concert will be held at a beautiful venue such as St. Anne’s Cathedral in the heart of the city.  Enjoy singing for and getting to know one another through your shared love of music!




SATURDAY, MARCH 21, 2020 | HANDEL'S DUBLIN | REHEARSAL

After breakfast in the hotel dining room, embark on a locally guided walking tour of Händel’s Dublin. The tour will introduce you to the sites connected with Händel’s stay here and the amazing first performance of his masterpiece, the Messiah, which took place in Dublin on April 13, 1742.

This afternoon, rehearsal will be held for tomorrow’s concert in St. Patrick’s Cathedral.  Choirs rehearse together and with the orchestra who will accompany the concert.

Dinner is arranged in a Dublin pub.




SUNDAY, MARCH 22, 2020 | DUBLIN CHORAL FESTIVAL CHURCH | MASSED SING

Enjoy breakfast before visiting a local church where your choir has been invited to sing for the worship service followed by time to meet and mingle with the welcoming congregation.  Choirs who prefer not to go to church can spend their morning at leisure in Dublin.

In the afternoon, choirs gather at St. Patrick’s Cathedral for another rehearsal in preparation for this evening’s joint concert.

Tonight, the Massed Performance for the Dublin International Choral Festival takes place in St. Patrick’s Cathedral.  Each choir performs an individual repertoire, followed by joining voices on two parts of Händel’s Messiah accompanied by an orchestra.




MONDAY, MARCH 23, 2020 | DEPART OR EXTEND STAY IN IRELAND

After breakfast, transfer to the Dublin Airport for your return flight home, or choose to extend your stay in Ireland with a customized extension.

Package

Inclusions

Accommodations
•4 nights in a 4-star hotel in Dublin or in Dublin suburbs

Transportation
•A private, modern, air-conditioned motor coach with a professional driver is provided is provided for all transportation as described in the itinerary.

Meals
•Breakfast each morning at the hotel
•Welcome dinner served at the hotel
•Farewell dinner served at a Dublin pub or restaurant

Tour Manager
•A full-time Music Contact International tour manager to accompany your group during their entire stay, from arrival to departure

Performance Opportunities
•Friendship concert with other visiting and Irish choirs
•Festival rehearsals with all participating choirs
•Sunday worship service and singing at a local church
•Massed performance for the Dublin Choral Festival

Guided Tours & Special Events
•Guided tour of Dublin, including Trinity College and the Book of Kells
•Festival welcome reception in Dublin City Hall
•Excursion to County Wicklow with visits to Powerscourt and Glendalough
•Guided walking tour of Händel’s Dublin

Complimentary Places
•Two complimentary land packages for every 30 paying travelers in single rooms.

Complimentary Directors Orientation Trip

October 3-7, 2019
Depart from North America on October 2nd

Upon arrival in Ireland, your Music Contact International tour manager will greet you at the airport. Together, transfer to your hotel in Dublin. There will be time to refresh from your journey before taking an orientation walk with sightseeing, a visit to the Book of Kells, and time for lunch. Visit the festival performance venues, including St. Patrick’s Cathedral. Dinners are arranged nightly in local pubs or in the hotel dining room, where you will meet participating choir directors who will be bringing their choirs to the festival in the spring.

Over the course of the weekend, enjoy time in Dublin, Kilkenny, Galway, and Limerick to see all that Ireland has to offer, including various possible performance venues around the country. Meet with local festival organizers to ask questions about the massed sing and repertoire.

*The Complimentary Orientation Tour is an invaluable opportunity to preview the venues and hotels and to discuss program points of the festival. Your travel to Ireland is complimentary, including airfare from New York’s JFK Airport, accommodations, ground transportation, and most meals. This Orientation Tour is for the choir director or official representative of each registered choir. Participation is not required, although the weekend is extremely helpful for visualizing the components of the festival and seeing what else Ireland has to offer your choir. If you are unable to attend the Orientation Tour, Music Contact International is happy to relay any specific questions to the festival organizers on your behalf.

 

Additional Days Abroad

Please let Music Contact International know if your choir is interested in remaining abroad longer. We are happy to plan an itinerary according to your choir’s interests. The magnificent cities of Galway, Kilkenny, Cork, Belfast, and more are only a short drive away.


Inclusions


Accommodations
•4 nights in a 4-star hotel in Dublin or in Dublin suburbs

Transportation
•A private, modern, air-conditioned motor coach with a professional driver is provided is provided for all transportation as described in the itinerary.

Meals
•Breakfast each morning at the hotel
•Welcome dinner served at the hotel
•Farewell dinner served at a Dublin pub or restaurant

Tour Manager
•A full-time Music Contact International tour manager to accompany your group during their entire stay, from arrival to departure

Performance Opportunities
•Friendship concert with other visiting and Irish choirs
•Festival rehearsals with all participating choirs
•Sunday worship service and singing at a local church
•Massed performance for the Dublin Choral Festival

Guided Tours & Special Events
•Guided tour of Dublin, including Trinity College and the Book of Kells
•Festival welcome reception in Dublin City Hall
•Excursion to County Wicklow with visits to Powerscourt and Glendalough
•Guided walking tour of Händel’s Dublin

Complimentary Places
•Two complimentary land packages for every 30 paying travelers in single rooms.


Complimentary Directors Orientation Trip


October 3-7, 2019
Depart from North America on October 2nd

Upon arrival in Ireland, your Music Contact International tour manager will greet you at the airport. Together, transfer to your hotel in Dublin. There will be time to refresh from your journey before taking an orientation walk with sightseeing, a visit to the Book of Kells, and time for lunch. Visit the festival performance venues, including St. Patrick’s Cathedral. Dinners are arranged nightly in local pubs or in the hotel dining room, where you will meet participating choir directors who will be bringing their choirs to the festival in the spring.

Over the course of the weekend, enjoy time in Dublin, Kilkenny, Galway, and Limerick to see all that Ireland has to offer, including various possible performance venues around the country. Meet with local festival organizers to ask questions about the massed sing and repertoire.

*The Complimentary Orientation Tour is an invaluable opportunity to preview the venues and hotels and to discuss program points of the festival. Your travel to Ireland is complimentary, including airfare from New York’s JFK Airport, accommodations, ground transportation, and most meals. This Orientation Tour is for the choir director or official representative of each registered choir. Participation is not required, although the weekend is extremely helpful for visualizing the components of the festival and seeing what else Ireland has to offer your choir. If you are unable to attend the Orientation Tour, Music Contact International is happy to relay any specific questions to the festival organizers on your behalf.

 


Additional Days Abroad


Please let Music Contact International know if your choir is interested in remaining abroad longer. We are happy to plan an itinerary according to your choir’s interests. The magnificent cities of Galway, Kilkenny, Cork, Belfast, and more are only a short drive away.

Extensions

AA two-night stay in Belfast will add an exciting element to an already wonderful stay in Ireland. Belfast is a spectacular capital city, rich in culture and history, where artistic and intellectual genius continues to flourish. Home to such famed sites and individuals as the Titanic, the Ulster Orchestra, Queen’s University, C.S. Lewis, Van Morrison, and Kenneth Branagh, Belfast is sure to offer something for everyone. Extending your stay in Ireland in the city of Belfast will undoubtedly prove to be a fascinating experience!

A
DAY ONE
Mid-day arrival in Belfast.  Enjoy a guided tour of Belfast to see the Albert Memorial Clock Tower, the Grand Opera House, City Hall, Queens University, and the Botanic Gardens. Visit Crumlin Road Gaol, dating back to 1845, and expand your understanding of the civil unrest that plagued Northern Ireland’s history. You may have the opportunity to perform an informal concert at the Gaol. Later this evening, check in to your hotel, where an arrival dinner will be served in the hotel dining room.

DAY TWO
Following breakfast, explore Titanic Belfast, an interactive exhibition that recreates the story of the world’s infamous ship. In the evening, join a local choir for a friendship concert at a local venue such as Hillsborough Parish Church*.  After the concert, a festive farewell dinner will be arranged at a local restaurant.

DAY THREE
After breakfast, check out of the hotel and transfer to the Dublin Airport and your return flight to North America.

A

When the Dublin Festival concludes, continue on to the thriving bohemian city of Galway on Ireland’s west coast! This 500-year-old city of 50,000 inhabitants is one of the major centers of Gaelic studies, with store signs still written in the ancient language. Galway is a popular seaside destination with a lively city center full of colorful shops, restaurants, and traditional Irish music echoing through the cobblestone streets.

A post-extension to Galway is the perfect way to end your stay in Ireland!

A
DAY ONE
Depart for Galway, stopping en route at Clonmacnoise, a wonderful early Christian site founded by St. Ciarán in the mid-6th century on the eastern bank of the River Shannon. After, transfer to Galway and check in to your hotel. An arrival dinner will be served in the hotel dining room.

A
DAY TWO
Following breakfast, depart for the Cliffs of Moher. Drive through the Burren Region and see the limestone pavements that have been eroded to distinctive patterns. Arrive at the Cliffs of Moher and look out at one of the most impressive views in Ireland. Return to Galway, and stop along the way at Rathbaun Farm where you will become enchanted with its thatched cottage home, turf fire, stone walls, and an array of animals. Upon arrival in Galway, take some time to prepare for an evening concert. Perform a concert tonight at a historic venue such as the Galway Cathedral* or St. Nicholas Collegiate Church*. A festive farewell dinner will be arranged to complement your concert schedule.

DAY THREE
After breakfast, check out of the hotel and transfer to the Shannon Airport and your return flight to North America.

AEnhance your Dublin Festival experience with a two-night extension to Killarney and Limerick, Ireland!

When the Dublin Festival concludes, continue on to the Irish countryside and experience Irish culture, history, music, and natural beauty at its best! A post-extension to Killarney and Limerick is the perfect way to end your stay in Ireland!

A
DAY ONE
Depart for Killarney, stopping en route at Blarney Castle, one of Ireland’s oldest and most historic fortresses.  Explore the castle’s spectacular grounds and kiss the famed Blarney Stone. After free time to shop for traditional Irish goods at Blarney Woolen Mills, continue on to Killarney and check in to your hotel. An arrival dinner will be served in the hotel dining room.

DAY TWO
Following breakfast, check out of your hotel and enjoy a jaunting car ride through the stunning natural beauty of Killarney National Park.  Next, take in the gorgeous coastal scenery of the Dingle Peninsula. Tonight, arrive in Limerick and check in to your hotel. Enjoy a festive farewell dinner including live music and entertainment at the Bunratty Castle Medieval Banquet.

DAY THREE
After breakfast, check out of the hotel and transfer to the Shannon Airport and your return flight to North America.


Two Night Extension to Belfast


AA two-night stay in Belfast will add an exciting element to an already wonderful stay in Ireland. Belfast is a spectacular capital city, rich in culture and history, where artistic and intellectual genius continues to flourish. Home to such famed sites and individuals as the Titanic, the Ulster Orchestra, Queen’s University, C.S. Lewis, Van Morrison, and Kenneth Branagh, Belfast is sure to offer something for everyone. Extending your stay in Ireland in the city of Belfast will undoubtedly prove to be a fascinating experience!

A
DAY ONE
Mid-day arrival in Belfast.  Enjoy a guided tour of Belfast to see the Albert Memorial Clock Tower, the Grand Opera House, City Hall, Queens University, and the Botanic Gardens. Visit Crumlin Road Gaol, dating back to 1845, and expand your understanding of the civil unrest that plagued Northern Ireland’s history. You may have the opportunity to perform an informal concert at the Gaol. Later this evening, check in to your hotel, where an arrival dinner will be served in the hotel dining room.

DAY TWO
Following breakfast, explore Titanic Belfast, an interactive exhibition that recreates the story of the world’s infamous ship. In the evening, join a local choir for a friendship concert at a local venue such as Hillsborough Parish Church*.  After the concert, a festive farewell dinner will be arranged at a local restaurant.

DAY THREE
After breakfast, check out of the hotel and transfer to the Dublin Airport and your return flight to North America.

Two Night Extension to Galway


A

When the Dublin Festival concludes, continue on to the thriving bohemian city of Galway on Ireland’s west coast! This 500-year-old city of 50,000 inhabitants is one of the major centers of Gaelic studies, with store signs still written in the ancient language. Galway is a popular seaside destination with a lively city center full of colorful shops, restaurants, and traditional Irish music echoing through the cobblestone streets.

A post-extension to Galway is the perfect way to end your stay in Ireland!

A
DAY ONE
Depart for Galway, stopping en route at Clonmacnoise, a wonderful early Christian site founded by St. Ciarán in the mid-6th century on the eastern bank of the River Shannon. After, transfer to Galway and check in to your hotel. An arrival dinner will be served in the hotel dining room.

A
DAY TWO
Following breakfast, depart for the Cliffs of Moher. Drive through the Burren Region and see the limestone pavements that have been eroded to distinctive patterns. Arrive at the Cliffs of Moher and look out at one of the most impressive views in Ireland. Return to Galway, and stop along the way at Rathbaun Farm where you will become enchanted with its thatched cottage home, turf fire, stone walls, and an array of animals. Upon arrival in Galway, take some time to prepare for an evening concert. Perform a concert tonight at a historic venue such as the Galway Cathedral* or St. Nicholas Collegiate Church*. A festive farewell dinner will be arranged to complement your concert schedule.

DAY THREE
After breakfast, check out of the hotel and transfer to the Shannon Airport and your return flight to North America.

Two Night Extension to Killarney & Limerick


AEnhance your Dublin Festival experience with a two-night extension to Killarney and Limerick, Ireland!

When the Dublin Festival concludes, continue on to the Irish countryside and experience Irish culture, history, music, and natural beauty at its best! A post-extension to Killarney and Limerick is the perfect way to end your stay in Ireland!

A
DAY ONE
Depart for Killarney, stopping en route at Blarney Castle, one of Ireland’s oldest and most historic fortresses.  Explore the castle’s spectacular grounds and kiss the famed Blarney Stone. After free time to shop for traditional Irish goods at Blarney Woolen Mills, continue on to Killarney and check in to your hotel. An arrival dinner will be served in the hotel dining room.

DAY TWO
Following breakfast, check out of your hotel and enjoy a jaunting car ride through the stunning natural beauty of Killarney National Park.  Next, take in the gorgeous coastal scenery of the Dingle Peninsula. Tonight, arrive in Limerick and check in to your hotel. Enjoy a festive farewell dinner including live music and entertainment at the Bunratty Castle Medieval Banquet.

DAY THREE
After breakfast, check out of the hotel and transfer to the Shannon Airport and your return flight to North America.

Your Tour Includes


Traveler's Resource Website


The site is customized exclusively for your group and is full of exciting and interactive features that you will find informative and helpful before, during, and after the tour.

•Current tour itinerary with full descriptions of each day

•Recommended books, movies, websites, and videos

•Travel tips including packing lists, exchange rates, and climate charts


Online Payment System


Group leaders have the option to use our Online Payment System, which enables you to effortlessly collect payments for your trip. Group leaders receive weekly automated reports with traveler balances and due dates.

Travelers can log in to our secure website to review the cost of their trip and all payment deadlines, register for the trip, and make credit card payments. All travelers receive automated reminders when payments are coming due.


Additional Materials


•Customized handbook for each person traveling with your choir, including a detailed program and travel information.
•Electrical adapters*
•Luggage tags
•Passport holder*

*for international travelers

2019-08-16T15:10:14+00:00