Live classical music festival for Monkstown

Inaugural event takes place next weekend

Monkstown Parish Church (Anglican) will be focal point for the first Music in Monkstown (MiM) festival next weekend. It begins on Friday with music by Chopin, played by pianist Finghin Collins at 7.30pm.

There will be a Taste of Opera with soprano Claudia Boyle and baritone Gavan Ring from 3pm on Saturday and the Navarra String Quartet at 7.30pm.

On Sunday at 7.30pm, the Royal Irish Academy of Music Ensemble will perform works by Beethoven, Debussy and Brahms.

Built by architect John Semple and opened in 1831, the church is striking. Its originality has not always inspired affection.The Irish Ecclesiastical Gazette wrote in 1880 that the church was not "suitable for a Christian place of worship".


However it has had many fans, too. Prominent among them was the late Sir John Betjeman, British poet laureate from 1972 until his death in 1984. He served in Dublin as press attache at the British embassy from 1941 to 1943.

“The bold turrets so suited in their mouldings and terminations to the beautiful [Dalkey] granite of which they are constructed,” he said,” . . . make Monkstown church one of my first favourites for its originality of detail and proportion.”

Patsy McGarry

Patsy McGarry

Patsy McGarry is Religious Affairs Correspondent of The Irish Times