Christmas concert arrangements – orchestras, choirs at the ready!

Here’s an information letter about Sunday’s sold-out concert for members of our ensembles taking part. And it’s a glimpse backstage for those going along 🙂

The ensembles involved are the Donegal Youth Orchestra, Donegal Chamber Orchestra, Donegal Junior Strings, Donegal Youth Choir, Letterkenny Junior Choir, Dungloe Junior Choir and Cór Shliabh Liag.

But that’s far from the end of the talent involved. Saxtet are back to entertain in the theatre foyer before the concert and during the interval. The remarkable Amy Meehan, who has been a regular at our Soundwaves get-togethers, is on stage singing at the grand piano. There’s also a four-hand piano treat from DMEP tutor Edita Labaunauskiene and our good friend Eiko Gallagher.

Promises to be a lovely evening, finishing with everyone singing carols along with the Donegal Youth Orchestra and conductor Vincent Kennedy.

 DMEP Christmas Concert Arrangements for Sunday 17 December

Dear Performing Group Member & Parent/Guardian,

Our annual Family Christmas Concert is in An Grianán Theatre, Letterkenny, on Sunday, 17th December, at 5pm.  It has been sold out for two weeks in advance so hopefully we’re guaranteed a good crowd! This is always a lovely Christmas-y evening. There’s a great line-up of performers once again, orchestras, choirs and singers among them.

Although the concert does not start until 5pm, the action starts earlier so that all the groups and performers get a chance to soundcheck at An Grianán and also practice getting on and off the stage (avoiding more Letterkenny traffic jams). Here are the arrival times at An Grianán for the ensembles –


  • 1.35pm Letterkenny Junior Choir (for soundcheck at 1.50pm sharp)
  • 1.45pm Donegal Youth Orchestra (soundcheck 2pm)
  • 2.30pm Donegal Youth Choir, Letterkenny/Dungloe (Carrick if there) junior choirs (soundchecks: closing carols 2.50pm; Donegal Youth Choir 3.20pm)
  • 3.35pm Donegal Chamber Orchestra (soundcheck 3.50pm)
  • 3.45pm Donegal Junior String Orchestra (soundcheck 4pm)
  • 4pm Dungloe Junior Choir, Cór Shliabh Liag soundcheck (4.10pm)


Your conductors will keep you posted on what’s happening. Probably best to take seats (quietly!) in theatre auditorium while waiting for soundchecks. For some ensembles, there will also be the chance to rehearse in the RCC after your soundcheck. All members of Donegal Youth Orchestra should be available for soundcheck/rehearsal in theatre from 1.45pm – 3.20pm.

After soundchecks, rooms are available in the theatre and in the RCC (check with conductor where you’re going) to rehearse, have food/snacks (don’t forget to bring them!) and wait until it’s time to return to perform. Here are the times you’re due backstage in the theatre –

[onstage times are approx.; smaller ensembles should be waiting quietly at side of stage five minutes before they’re on, larger ensembles will be in the corridor, again quietly :-)]


  • 4.45pm Donegal Chamber Orchestra and Donegal Junior Strings (DCO onstage for 4.55pm, DJS join them at 5.19pm)
  • 5.15pm Dungloe Junior Choir (onstage 5.30pm)
  • 5.30pm Carrick Junior Choir (onstage 5.45pm)
  • 5.35pm Letterkenny Junior Choir (onstage 5.49pm)
  • 5.45pm Donegal Youth Choir (onstage 6.02pm)
  • 6.05pm Donegal Youth Orchestra (set up onstage at 6.15pm, onstage to perform 6.30pm)


As many of you are travelling from different parts of the county, the following buses have been arranged to take you to Letterkenny.


BUS PICK-UPS:           

                                    12.45pm      LIDL car-park, Donegal Town & then via Ballybofey

1.30pm        Chapel car-park, Dungloe, quickest route to Letterkenny


IMPORTANT NOTE!  As most parents / families traditionally attend the Christmas Concert, there is no RETURN transport provided after the concert.  The concert will finish around 7.30pm.


All performers and families are invited to join us in the RCC (behind An Grianán Theatre) for some light refreshments AFTER the concert to mark the festive season and to show appreciation for your ongoing commitment to your performing group and to the DMEP throughout the year.




  • Please note you must bring a full packed lunch and enough snacks and drinks to last you throughout the afternoon and into the evening of the concert as you won’t be allowed to leave the grounds of the RCC / An Grianán Theatre to purchase food (unless you’re over 18 or have a permission slip).


  • Dress for the concert is ALL BLACK, including shoes and socks/tights. In the spirit of Christmas we encourage the addition of some sparkles or a splash of red or green as part of your dress, and in the case of our Junior Choirs, don’t forget to bring your Santa hat!  We also ask that all members of the Saxtet to don their black gear for their performances in the theatre foyer


  • To all our instrumentalists, PLEASE bring your own music stand (there could be a music stand drought if you don’t!)


    Each member is asked to bring in €2 to contribute to a present for the individual leaders of our performing groups 😉  This note will self-destruct in five seconds (software permitting)

Get in contact if you have any queries. Enjoy the show!  THE DMEP CREW  07491 76293; 087 1677 699 (Martin’s mobile);