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Tag Archives: Fleadh

Fleadh 2016 kicks off on a high note

Fleadh Cheoil na hÉireann was officially launched on Sunday afternoon to throngs of people who gathered in the county town to celebrate this momentus occasion. Crowds lined the streets as the festivities began with a parade through the town centre. Ennis came alive with the sound of music, as groups found spots to set up and play awaiting the arrival of President Michael D Higgins. Special tribute was paid to the late Clare singer, Robbie McMahon whose song, The Fleadh Down in Ennis, has been rolled out once again in celebration of the talent that has descended on Ennis for the 2016 All Ireland Fleadh. Addressing the masses in Abbey Street Car Park, and those onlooking from balconies and windows overhead President Higgins, paid tribute to Robbie and this iconic song quoting, “They came from the North and they came from the East from the West and the South ‘twas a thriller to see”. Robbie was also mentioned in the …

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Eoin Shares his passion for music

PASSIONATE about playing himself and bringing the music of others into the public domain, Eoin O’Neill is a big part of the scene in Clare. “I arrived in Doolin on December 28, 1979. I thought I was coming for an afternoon and I’m still here,” he says of his arrival in this county. That wasn’t far off 40 years ago and he has been playing here since, while he also hosts shows on local radio. “I’m more passionate than ever. I’m lucky in that I have a couple of shows on Clare FM and that allows me to feature the local musicians, especially the local ones that should be featured and aren’t featured enough. I’m allowed to play whatever I want and I appreciate that so much.” A bazouki player, he has a few new albums coming out. “At the moment, I have two albums completed and ready for release. One is with a band I play with, The Fiddle …

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Children’s postcards from the Fleadh

THE protection of the environment is the theme of postcards designed by young people from across the county, which have been distributed throughout Ennis to coincide with Fleadh Cheoil na hÉireann. The Green Fleadh Postcard Competition for primary schools sought designs on the themes of litter and waste recycling, energy, water and travel. The winning postcards, which have been selected by the Green Fleadh team, are designed by Eabha McNamara, senior infants, St Mochulla’s Tulla; Dylan Williams, first class, Ennis NS; Sarah Gorman, fourth class, Clarecastle NS and Conor Farrell, fifth class, Corofin NS. The postcards featuring the successful puplis’ name, class and school are being made available at a number of locations, including the Fleadh Office Headquarters at Áras Contae an Chláir, the Fleadh Office in the Market, Ennis Tourist Office, Ennis Chamber of Commerce on O’Connell Street and the Visit Clare Office in Abbey Street Carpark. “The Green Fleadh team has implemented measures to keep Clare clean and …

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Pubs stock up for busy week

FACTORS such as rising prices, the smoking ban and a severe recession have seen pubs endure several years of decline, but Ennis publicans are now preparing for what is likely to be one of their busiest ever weeks. Gerry Kelly is involved with The Diamond on O’Connell Street, Considine’s on Parnell Street and Dan O’Connell’s in the Square. Reflecting on the last time the Fleadh was in Ennis, back in 1977, he said, “I remember, I was working in The Cloister. Culture has changed an awful lot since. At that time, all the windows on the shops in town were barred up. But you don’t get a rough crowd following the Fleadh.” There are fewer premises now to take the drinkers, he added. “I would say there is about 14 pubs less than the last time it was here. It can be frightening when you think about it. If you remember the crowd that was in O’Connell Street after we …

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Youth singing workshops at Fleadh

Clare County Council is to host two free traditional singing workshops during Fleadh Cheoil na hÉireann in Ennis next week. The workshops, which offer young singers the opportunity to experience County Clare’s rich singing tradition, take place at the De Valera Public Library in Ennis from 10.30am to midday on Tuesday and Wednesday. The sessions will also feature demonstrations of traditional songs and style by John Flanagan and Elle Marie O’Dwyer. Tuesday’s workshop will be facilitated by Corofin native John Flanagan, who is nephew of the renowned singers Sarah and Rita Keane in Galway. Elle Marie O’Dwyer, a primary school teacher from Cork, who is currently pursuing a Masters in Irish Traditional Music Performance, will host the Wednesday session. Siobhán Mulcahy, Clare Arts Officer, said “We believe these workshops will complement the existing traditional singing classes provided at Fleadh Cheoil na hÉireann by Comhaltas, with the intention of attracting more young people to traditional singing either as singers or listeners.”

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Céilí bands from Japan

Toyota may be one of the world’s leading car brands but, in Japan, it is one of the country’s most popular surnames. Kozo Toyota is a talented flute-player and founder of the Toyota Ceílí Band in Tokyo. The band was founded in June 2011, in response to an increasing demand for regular céilís in Japan. The band is the first céilí band comprised of Japanese musicians, who host these dances on a regular basis. The members are keen to explore the best way to play for set dancing and have also learned to dance some sets themselves. In September 2015, they won the first prize for the unofficial céilí band competition, organised by Comhaltas Japan. In June of this year, they were awarded first place in the céilí band category of the competitions during the first Féile Tokyo and qualified to enter Fleadh Cheoil na hÉireann in Ennis. The nine members of the band play a range of instruments, including two flutes, three fiddles, button accordion, …

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Clare Champion car sticker celebrates Fleadh

With Fleadh Cheoil na hÉireann 2016 in Ennis only a matter of weeks away, The Clare Champion has produced a car sticker to highlight the county’s rich traditional music heritage. “The Banner – home of traditional music”, is the catchphrase on the must-have car sticker, available free with this week’s Clare Champion on Thursday. Displaying this car stick will be an endorsement of your pride in the Fleadh returning to Clare after a long wait.

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No dining al fresco during Fleadh

RESTAURANTS that have tables outside their premises will be hit during the Fleadh, as it has been confirmed that all street furniture in Ennis will have to be removed. Adrian Jackson from Safety Solutions, who is managing his sixth Fleadh, said they had to address a number of concerns from statutory agencies, such as the gardaí, medical personnel and local authority, in adddition to the 20 conditions attached to the event licence. A safety officer will also be provided during the event, while an event control room will be established in Clare County Council’s headquarters in New Road, Ennis, to respond to any emergency. This room will be manned by gardaí, advanced paramedics and stewards, who will be watching with the help of closed circuit television cameras. “Crowd management is the biggest challenge for the Fleadh. Everyone’s safety is the most important thing. If people are not safe, it is not a good event for anyone. “There will be changes …

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