This year’s Féile na Seanbheairice is on from the 7th June until the 10th June. The festival will include a host of events for all the family. Beginning on Thursday evening, to celebrate the feast day of Colmcille, a group of local children will present their interpretation of a famous Colmcille legend, telling the story of a sixth-century copyright battle between St. Colmcille and St. Finian. An tSean Bheairic is delighted to have local historian Dr. Seosamh Ó Ceallaigh open the festival on Friday next. Dr. Ó Ceallaigh will present a bi-lingual lecture entitled “Colmcille i mBéaloideas Chloich Cheann Fhaola / Colmcille in the folklore of Cloughaneely”. This will be followed by music in the Caifé by local musicians. Corn Cuimhneacháin Éamoinn Ghráinne will be held on Saturday 9 and is the flagship event of the festival.
The competition is open to seannós singers of all ages. The cup will be presented to the winner of the competition and prizes will be awarded in the following categories: best male singer; best female signer; and best singer under 18 years of age. Patricia Nic Ruairí, daughter of Éamoinn Ghráinne Mac Ruairí, will host a singing workshop for children on Saturday morning at 11.30am. This will be followed by “Corn Amhránaíochta Éamoinn Ghráinne do dhaoine óga”, a singing competition for children. The children and their families are sure to enjoy a fun and friendly occasion.
Gerard Devane, a renowned seannós dancer from Conamara will conduct a sean-nós dancing workshop on Saturday. Audiences are sure to be treated to a fantastic display of sean-nós dancing, as competitors compete for “Corn na Seanbheairice”, the cup won last year by Judy Ní Ógáin. On Sunday morning, Seamus Doohan, from walkingdonegal.net will lead a walk to the magnificent Ray Cross inside the ancient Ray Church for a Colmcille-inspired family tour. Later in the day Connie McKelvey will host a two-hand dancing workshop and at 3pm the Caifé in An tSean Bheairic will host an Afternoon Tea Dance in conjunction with the Colm Clancy Memorial Walk, with music, song and dance in aid of charities in Malawi, Central Africa. The festival will be brought to a close on Sunday night with an evening of film, showcasing the sean-nós singing tradition in Donegal.
Máire Ní Chasaide, manager of An tSean Bheairic had this to say: “We have some of the most unique and valuable cultural assets here in the Donegal Gaeltacht. It is a very rich culture that is unique and which can’t be found anywhere else in the world. Sometimes we don’t realise how valuable it is or appreciate how vibrant it is. Therefore, I am delighted that the festival is showcasing the best of Gaeltacht culture in a way that audiences of all types will enjoy and I believe we have struck on an exciting and vibrant programme and have a festival with a very strong identity”. For further information contact Paddy at 074 9180655. Festival Programme, including upcoming summer events, available at: www.antseanbheairic.com
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