Countdown on for Munster Fleadh Cheoil in Killarney
COMHALTAS Ceoltóirí Éireann (CCE) has officially launched the 54th Munster Fleadh Cheoil which this year comes to Killarney for the first time.
Running from July 14 to July 20, over 12,000 visitors and competitors are expected for the week long schedule of competitions, dance and musical entertainment. Speaking at the launch, organising committee chairman Eoin Ó Carra thanked sponsors for their generosity and support.
The event is corporately sponsored by Kerry Group and supported by Killarney Town Council, Kerry County Council and Killarney Chamber of Commerce.
He also acknowledged the assistance received from Killarney's local hotels and businesses, along with the tremendous hard work and commitment demonstrated by the organising committee, drawn up from five CCE branches: Killarney, Kilcummin, Glenflesk, Sliabh Luachra and Fossa/Two Mile.
Officially launching the event, Kerry Group Director of Corporate Affairs Frank Hayes said he looked forward to a rich and innovative programme of events organised by the local branches.
"Not only is the Fleadh a wonderful celebration of traditional Irish culture, the event is a huge boost to the economy of the region, with huge numbers attending throughout the week long festivities," he said.
Preparations began almost 12 months ago and there has been huge work to date carried out by volunteers in organising the various competitions.
There will be competitions in music, song and dance for age groups from under-12 to senior. Other events include a lecture on 'The Ancient Music of Ireland', a story-telling evening with Batt Burns, dance workshop, a singers' club at the Arbutus Hotel, Ionad na Gaeilge at St Brendan's College and concerts and céilís at the INEC and Darby O'Gills.
A number of free outdoor concerts and céilís are also planned. For details see www.munsterfleadh.ie
Kerry hosted its first Fleadh Cheoil na Mumhan in Castleisland in 1966. Since then it has visited Kerry on just eight occasions: Kilgarvan (1972), Tralee (1978), Killorglin (1984), Dingle (1990, 1996), Milltown (2002) and Kenmare (2008, 2010).