Newcastle school celebrates 25th anniversary with special concert

Newcastle school celebrates 25th anniversary with special concert

10 April 2019

SHIMNA Integrated College’s 25th anniversary celebrations continued with a special concert on Monday night.

The entire school community came together for a musical 25th anniversary celebration. The concert featured some of the musical pieces that are happening in extra-curricular activities and exam classes, and also showcased the work of drama students.

Performers included Shimna Community Voices, Shimna Integrated College Choir, The Singing Sisters; A level and GCSE musicians and singers, Shimna Woodwind Band, Rock Shimna Band, the school’s Drama department and principal Kevin Lambe.

The centrepiece of the event was the launch of the 25th anniversary single, Building Tomorrow, which was performed live by Shimna Community Voices.

The 127-voice choir is made up of students from Shimna College and All Children’s Integrated Primary school, as well as staff and families from both schools. 

Songwriter Ria Maguirel, a former pupil of All Children’s and Shimna College, decided to mark the quarter-century milestone by writing a song dedicated to the incredible and inspiring work that happens every day in the school.

All students and staff were consulted about their own thoughts about Shimna and the lyrics of the song were inspired by their words.

The Northern Ireland Council for Integrated Education’s theme this year is ‘Perspectives’ and the school thought this was a fitting way to give their perspective on the importance of integrated education and what it means to them. 

 Shimna was awarded a £1,000 grant from the Integrated Education Fund’s Carson Bursary scheme, which allowed them to record the song professionally with Dean Stevens from One30Two Studio, as well as to hold a school-wide competition for the CD artwork. 

The designs of three Key Stage 3 students were chosen to feature on the CD, programmes and promotional material, which has been digitally recreated by Bangor artist Rachel Anne Coulter.

The CDs were available at Monday night’s concert and the song will be available to stream online in the near future. 

Mr Lambe said: “As a very young Shimna student, Ria performed in the Waterfront Hall on a very significant Integrated Education anniversary.

“We are so delighted to have her on the staff now to bring us together in composing, recording and performing our anniversary song.”

He added: We are particularly pleased to be singing with our own students, staff and families, and also All Children’s IPS students, staff and families.”