Feile Chois Cuain 2016 was a great success.
All roads lead to Louisburgh on the May bank holiday for the annual weekend of music, song and dance. In its 22nd year feile promised not to disappoint with a fine line up of tutors and ceoltóirí for the weekend. New to Feile this year was the well know Gearóid Ó Dubháin, a multi award winner in Sean Nós Dancing. He started off the weekend in great style on Friday night, dancing to the lively tunes of Marcus Hernon. Marcus who launched his CD “Kindle the Fire”, after the official opening of the feile.
For those eager to start the weekend before the official opening, Mol an Óige put on an astounding concert early Friday evening. It showcased the great talent that Louisburgh and surrounding areas have in abundance. The Cresham school of dancing showed why they are winning so many titles in Mayo, Connacht, Ireland and in the Worlds in the scene of Irish Dancing with a fine display. The stage was filled with many, many talented youngsters form local schools, and other great young musicians well accredited in their own rights.
In the quietness of Duffys Pub on Main street that night, well know singers such as Roisin White, Tim Dennehy and others along with the fear an Ti John O Toole entertained a packed house.
Saturday dawned to an exciting morning of young and not so young making their way to Sancta Maria college to learn from some of the best in music, song and dance.
Gearóid Ó Dubháin was a huge success drawing a large attendance of eager dancers to his Sean Nós dancing class.
Pádraig and Roisin McEneany held their own in the town hall with a successful set dancing work shop.
Singers were treated to the expertise of Tim Dennehy (Ballads) and Mairéad Ni Fhlatharta (Sean-nós Singing) to learn new songs and styles of singing.
While budding and established musicians were taken under the wings of well known and accredited musicians such as Daíthaí Gormley and Nuala Hehir ( Accordion) Freda Hatton (Harp) , Cormac Begely (Concertina) , Conor Mc Cague (Banjo) , Kathleen Connelly and Angela Dean Masterson ( Tin Whistle), Hammy Hamilton and Tommy Fitzharris (Flute), Matt Cranitch and Antóin MacGabhann (Fiddle) who all shared their passion and expertise with their students.
For those who loved Sean- nós singing, the annual Seisiún Amhránaíochta Sean-nóis was a delight. As the captivating voices and amhrain of Mairéad Ni Fhlatarta, Meaití Jó Shéamais, Síle Uí Mhongáin, Johhny Mháirtín Learai and mother and daughter Kate Sweeney and Kathryn Tiernan to name but a few, entranced the listeners.
Others who came to enjoy a good session of tunes were found weaving their way through the pubs of Louisburgh, where musicians such as Paddy Gorham, Francis O Hollarn and many more regular musicians to the Feile played for hours and hours on end.
At 8pm the large crowds started making their way to the town hall for the Grand Concert, where the above mentioned tutors and other fine musicians gave a fine display of their talents. This was also the appropriate opportunity to officially thank Michael O’ Grady for his years of organisation and dedication to Feile Chois Cuain.
On Saturday night fine tunes and Songs go leor with the the tip tapping of dancing shoes could be heard echo around the town.
On Sunday parishioners at morning Mass enjoyed a fine display of dancing by The Cresham school of dancing and the gallery hosted many of the fine musicians mentioned already who adorned mass with their beautiful music.
At 4pm on Sunday yet again the town hall hosted another concert. A concert which featured local and visiting artists who had composed new tunes, songs and dances. Locals Christina, Eric and Brendan Heneghan joined on stage by James Langan started off the concert by paying tribute to their Dad Seamus Heneghan and his collection of composed tunes. Seamus was in the audience to enjoy it himself, and boasted a huge smile on his face when he heard them play. Others who performed on the day were the well known musicians, singers and dancers, Marcus Hernon, Richie Dwyer and John Dwyer, Connie O’ Donnell, Tim Dennehy and Padraig and Roisin McEneany all giving the audience a concert to remember.
As Sunday night gave way to Monday music, song and dance could be heard pouring out from the pubs around the town. This was again in full swing early on Monday for the Slán Abhaile. A relaxed affair where many visitors and locals joined in a singsong and enjoyed the last music of the weekend.
As visitors headed home after a wonderful weekend they vowed to be back to enjoy the spoils again next year and Committee Members could already be seen planning for next year’s Feile.