I extend my best wishes to the competitors heading to the Scoil Eigese and Fleadh Cheoil na hÉireann in Sligo . . . enjoy the experience and savor the memories.
Here at home, I remind everyone to be sure and visit www.irishculture.org ~ the Irish Cultural Center website to check out all the happenings and events.
Also, visit www.irishmassachusetts.com to catch a full round-up of summer and fall concerts and events . . . the official site of (BITA) Boston Irish Tourism Association.
Enclosed with this month’s newsletter is a notice detailing a gala weekend of irish music, heritage & culture presented by The Pillar House Bar & Restaurant in Ballinasloe, Ireland. The weekend was arranged to pay tribute to our former beloved chairman, Larry Reynolds. [See more about the weekend here.]
Thanks to all who promoted, participated and/or came along to support this event. The lovely evening concert by “Open the Door for Three” was brilliant and a great round of sean nos dancers topped off the event. Special thanks to dedicated parents and skillful teachers who prepared competitors for both the Mid-Atlantic Fleadh in New Jersey and the Féili Cheoil in Melrose. Well done all !
The monthly Seisiún will resume in September. On Sun., June 1st there will be a céili fundraiser at the Canadian-American Hall for the branch members who qualified at the Mid-Atlantic Fleadh in New Jersey and who are heading to the Fleadh in Sligo in August to compete. Proceeds from this event will help offset their travel costs. Looking forward to seeing many of you there.
Register online and we’ll collect the fee of $5 per competition ($10 max per family) at the Feile Office on the day of the competition. Registration of competitors will continue on Saturday and all payments will be collected from 10 – 12:30 in the fleadh office. [There isn't a category on the form that reflects a trio; in that case, just note it on the registration form and it will be fine.)
Here is the competition schedule:
12:30: U10 competitions
1:15: U12 competitions
2:00: U15 competitions
2:45: U18 competitions
3:15 adult competitions
We'll divide these time-slots into groups, with beginner / intermediate / advanced categories.
Chips, cookies, and drinks will be available for purchase at $1 each
Other fundraiser activities include t-shirts and raffle tickets. Performer CDs will be available (proceeds to performers).
Kids' activities include face painting, crafts, various relay races, and water balloons!
Consider bringing a lawn chair for yourselves for the music on the lawn - we have a *really good* lineup, from 11am - 4, including a storyteller!!!
Competitions from 1-4PM
Competitions will be held in such categories as fiddle, flute, accordion and singing. Entrants can register online through the Féile Cheoil website or from 10AM-1PM at the venue. The competitions will take place from 1-4PM.
Piper Kieran O’Hare and fiddler Liz Knowles return this year, along with bouzouki player and vocalist Pat Broaders, as Open the Door for Three – a trio of highly acclaimed musicians with strong roots in the Irish tradition whose individual and collective resumes include “Riverdance,” Cherish the Ladies, Mick Moloney and The Greenfields of America, Liz Carroll, John Doyle, Danú, Robbie O’Connell, The String Sisters, and John Whelan.
Before the evening concert begins there will be a 6PM performance by Realta Geala, an ensemble of young musicians from the Boston Comhaltas Music School. Féile Cheoil 2014 champions will be featured at 7:30 p.m., followed by Open the Door for Three.
Tulla – Boston Exhange
The evening event will be the launch of a four-part concert series hosted by the Comhaltas School and the Melrose Messina Arts Fund, proceeds from which will go to support a young traditional musicians exchange program involving the Boston Comhaltas School and a ceili band in Tulla directed by renowned concertina player Mary MacNamara. The Tulla musicians are scheduled to come to Boston in November, and will give a concert during their stay; their Boston counterparts would visit Ireland next February.
The second annual Féile Cheoil will be held Sat., May 17th in Melrose. The fundraiser is to support the Trad Youth Exchange Program. Fifteen of our young musicians will be meeting with fifteen youngsters from the Tulog Céili Band in Tulla, County Clare. The Tulog group will be coming to Boston in November 2014 and our group travels in February 2015. Proceeds will help defray travel costs. Come out for a few tunes during the day, either to participate or compete. “Open The Door For Three” finale concert in the evening ~ not to be missed!
Hats off to Co-chairs Tom Vesey, Paul Keating, and Frankie McCormack and the Mid-Atlantic Region team of volunteers for a fantastic weekend in Parsippany, NJ ~ one to remember. The NA Convention, the Mid-Atlantic Fleadh, and the Hall of Fame induction were an immense undertaking. It was terrific to see such a great contingent from the branch there to support the event. Everywhere I looked I could see them partaking in music sessions, set dancing, singing and reuniting with friends from Ireland, Canada and the USA.
Lisa Coyne, Executive Director of the music school, and I congratulate all the Fleadh competitors, especially the first-timers…you were so brave…we are very proud of you! A big THANK YOU to all the parents, teachers, coaches and especially Sean Clohessy, our volunteer coach, for working with our Réaltai Geala ~ “Bright Stars” ensemble! Look for final placement results in the next newsletter.
The second annual Féile Cheoil will be held Sat., May 17th in Melrose (see flyer). The fundraiser is to support the Trad Youth Exchange Program. Fifteen of our young musicians will be meeting with fifteen youngsters from the Tulog Céili Band in Tulla, County Clare. The Tulog group will be coming to Boston in November 2014 and our group travels in February 2015. Proceeds will help defray travel costs. Come out for a few tunes during the day, either to participate or compete. “Open The Door For Three” finale concert in the evening ~ not to be missed!
April edition of the Reynolds-Hanafin-Cooley Branch of Comhaltas Ceoltóirí Éireann Newsletter plus additional information on the Irish Hearts for Orphans benefit dance Sunday April 27th 4-8PM at Marriott Boston Quincy.
To members who’ve renewed their 2013-2014 membership – Thank You. In an ongoing effort to streamline branch expenses, the newsletter will be mailed/emailed to paid-up members only. We are grateful to all members for your continuing support and extend a warm welcome to our newest members.
I’m looking forward to a weekend of Irish music and dance April 24th-27th in Parsippany, New Jersey! For the first time ever, the 2014 CCÉ Convention will wrap around a Provincial Fleadhanna! Several of us are heading to New Jersey to also enjoy Concerts and Ceilithe; Instrument, Singing, Set Dance, Ceili and Sean Nos workshops. The weekend’s theme is a celebration of the “bloom of youth,” the future of the Comhaltas movement! The branch wishes Tom Vesey and his team continued success.
To those not attending the convention, I encourage you to support the 5th Annual Irish Hearts for Orphans Benefit Dance on Sunday, April 27th at the Boston Quincy Marriott. See details in the flyer enclosed in the newsletter.
Kudos to our webmaster, Eileen McClelland, for the skillful redesign of our website and for getting emails off in between newsletters when needed. Dan Mahoney is doing a wonderful job emailing the monthly newsletter and other news too. Also, I want to acknowledge the Seisiún attendees who faithfully bring raffles and refreshments. Barbara Boyd has to often work miracles when break items are light. Keep in mind when Watertown bound.
I am grateful also for a key component to our success, the musicians, who I depend on each month to play for the sets. The dancers who skillfully maneuver thru the sets add to the craic too. Hats off to Lisa Coyne and the dedicated teachers and eager students at the Music School. To our board of officers and to all who support the branch I extend my sincere appreciation.
Members will be remembered in a special Marianist Novena of Masses at Easter and at daily Mass throughout the year. May you find happiness in the meaning of Easter and feel the joy and peace in the wonders of Spring.