Clann Mhic Ruairí are the next act to headline the new TG4 series Féile Ealaíne an Earagail this Sunday, 19th February, at 21:30.
The renowned musical family from Rann na Feirste are on the main stage at An Grianán Theatre in Letterkenny in this week’s Episode 5 from Earagail Arts Festival.
Siblings Tony (singer), Aodh (singer/guitar), Sean (singer), Dónall (singer/percussion) and Tony’s daughter Megan (piano and singer) were raised on the Gaelic songs and stories of the Rann na Feirste Gaeltacht in West Donegal.
Hearing their music gives the listener an insight into this rich culture which they continue to preserve. This corner of Ireland is the birth place of internationally-acclaimed artists who have moulded the Irish traditional music scene since the 1970s.
Clannad, Skara Brae, Altan, Manus and Dónall Lunny, to name but a few, have all blossomed in this area and Clann Mhic Ruairí have now taken up the torch in the hope of conserving and promoting this rich musical culture which lies at the core of their being.
In Teach na nAmhrán we meet recent recipient of TG4’s ‘amhránaí na bliana’, Niall Hanna joined by Stephen Loughran and Rachel McGarrity, while Glenties fiddler Tara Connaghan is in Ionad Cois Locha, Dún Lúiche, and piper Méabh O’Donnell is this week’s young musician.
Méabh Conaghan, Chair of Earagail Arts Festival’s Board of Directors welcomed the collaboration between Earagail Arts Festival and Aniar on the new series which has been met with widespread praise.
“To develop such an inspiring and delightful series for TG4 (and its online player) is fantastic. It brings the best music alive again following the live concerts in Summer 2022.
“Not only that, but it shines such a positive light on the whole festival, and also the wider county and Irish, homegrown talent for a worldwide audience. It is a true celebration of Irish language and culture, but is also very accessible to a non-Irish speaking audience thanks to the always available captions.
“From the talent on display, I found it inspiring to hear the grá for County Donegal recounted by some of the visiting acts i.e Neil Martin, Ryan Molloy, Goitse, who all had lovely stories to tell during the programme so far.”
Niamh Ní Bhaoill, Producer, Aniar TV, said: “I was absolutely delighted to have the best excuse ever to spend a sunny week in stunning Donegal recording at Earagail Arts Festival for Aniar TV’s latest music programme.
“It’s basically non-stop music and song and it showcases the incredible musical talent of County Donegal and the surrounding areas bringing some amazing performances to TG4’s audience both here and abroad. There is an abundance of talent out there and what better place to record it than in Donegal’s beautiful landscape which is featured right throughout the series.
“Another bonus is the fact that the series is fronted by two talented young Irish speakers, both presenting on television for the first time – young Donegal musician and singer Cathal Ó Curráin along with young singer Sibéal Ní Chasaide, who, despite having her roots firmly set in her native Meath, has a huge Donegal connection, being one of the musical Ó Casaide family. It is music all the way in this series and what more could you want!”
Don’t miss Féile Ealaíne an Earagail on TG4 this Sunday, 19th February, at 21:30. To watch back the whole series to-date, all episodes can be viewed worldwide on the TG4 Player at www.tg4.ie
Photo Credit: John Soffe Photography for Aniar
Earagail Arts Festival is kindly supported by Donegal County Council, The Arts Council / An Chomhairle Ealaíon and Wild Atlantic Way.