Cross-Border Orchestra to kick off Easter Rising commemorations
The Cross-Border Orchestra of Ireland will perform the first of a series of events commemorating the 100th anniversary of the Easter Rising.
The Irish government has invited the youth orchestra to perform New Year's Day celebrations in Dublin.
The event will feature performers from all 32 counties.
Cross-Border Orchestra CEO Sharon Treacy-Dunne said the event will teach young people about the significance of the Easter Rising.
"I think that this will really help them to realise what the whole event is about and to familiarise themselves more with their own history," she said.
"The Irish government wanted to have an opening event that would be all-inclusive and that would include the entire island of Ireland and include every county in Ireland," Mrs Treacy-Dunne said.
Children aged between nine and twelve from across Ireland will also perform in a choir on the day.
Schools participating from Northern Ireland include Holy Family Primary School, Magherafelt, County Derry, Holy Family Primary School, Belfast, County Antrim, St. Jarlath's Primary School, Dungannon, County Tyrone, St. Martin's Primary School, Garrison, County Fermanagh, St. Patrick's Primary School, Ballinlare, County Armagh and St. Mary's Primary School, Newry, County Down.
St Martin's Primary School principal Brian McGarth said there was a "buzz" among the students who will participate in the commemorative event.
"The kids are very excited about going to Dublin for the convention centre to be in a 32 county choir in front of an audience of about 2,000 guests," he said.
"It's a large concert, it's a prestigious event. I thought the kids would like to be a part of that," Mr McGarth said.
"I thought it would be something school would love to take part in and we get to to represent County Fermanagh."
The orchestra was established in 1995 as a peace initiative between Catholic and Protestant communities.
Mrs Treacy-Dunne said the orchestra plays an important role in facilitating friendships between young people from all communities.
"Music really does cross all barriers," she said.