33rd an­nual Fes­ti­val of Harp a re­sound­ing suc­cess

Mid Louth Independent - - NEWS -

THE splen­did sur­round­ings of an Grainan in Ter­mon­feckin rang to the lilt­ing strains of our na­tional in­stru­ment last week, as the 33rd In­ter­na­tional Fes­ti­val of Ir­ish Harp played host to the big­gest ever harp en­sem­ble to take place in Ire­land!

Harpers from all over the world came to­gether at the Fes­ti­val, a high­light in the Ir­ish harp’s cal­en­dar and an im­por­tant fea­ture of County Louth’s Cre­ative Ire­land pro­gramme, sup­ported by the Arts Coun­cil.

“It was a truly fan­tas­tic fes­ti­val and it was full of so many high points it’s hard to pick just one said Aibh­lin McCrann, fes­ti­val di­rec­tor.“In the fes­ti­val’s 33 year his­tory, it truly was an his­toric spec­ta­cle to see the young harpers from all over Ire­land join fes­ti­val par­tic­i­pants to per­form a reimag­in­ing of Carolan’s mu­sic led by ac­claimed harper Tri­ona Mar­shall and ac­cor­dion­ist and com­poser, Martin Tour­ish of Al­tan.” said Aibh­lin McCrann, fes­ti­val di­rec­tor.

Fes­ti­val 2018 ex­plored and in­ter­preted the mu­sic of Tur­lough Carolan, the renowned harper com­poser who died in 1738. Work­shops and con­certs, fea­tur­ing ac­claimed Ir­ish harpers, ex­per­i­ment­ing and col­lab­o­rat­ing with other artists, reimagined Carolan’s reper­toire in song and story and en­cour­ages in­no­va­tive ar­range­ments for the harp, as well as in­tro­duc­ing a new gen­er­a­tion of Ir­ish harpers to his mu­sic.

“These young harpers lit­er­ally started with a blank piece of paper at 9.30am and by 5pm, had three-part suite – it was amaz­ing to hear,” adds Aibh­lin. Lo­cal singers lead by Gerry Cullen were also a fes­ti­val high­light, as well as free lunchtime con­certs in the Thosel in West Street.

Young mu­si­cians giv­ing a lunchtime con­cert in The Tholsel

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