Wexford Comhaltas enjoy inaugural summer session
Craobh Loch gCarman CCÉ enjoyed a great day of music, song, dance and yummy food at Murphy's Barn on Bank Holiday Monday.
The occasion was the first ever Wexford Comhaltas summer session and barbecue. The inclement weather did not dampen the enthusiasm of the big number of musicians, dancers, singers and listeners of all ages who turned up, nor did it take in any way from the seisiún that followed.
The assembled musicians started with the jig 'Haste to the Wedding'. This was a pretty apt opener as the venue had hosted a wedding party only a few hours earlier!
The music took off after that with the many younger musicians present getting an opportunity to shine. There was dancing, of the floorboard-rattling kind, firstly by Ciara O'Grady Fitzpatrick, then by Annemarie Nolan.
Elder statesman and Maestro Paddy Berry sang The Auld Sunday Dinner as the waft of grilling burgers drifted in from the barbecue. Ronan Berry gave a wonderfully composed and expressive rendition of the ballad Paul and Nancy Hogan.
The afternoon continued with old friends catching up and new friends being readily accepted into the fold while the musicians played on with great spirit, virtuosity and good humour.
Off in a sideroom the atmosphere was one of intense application and scholarship as young artists took part in a competition to come up with crest and logo designs for the new Comhaltas group.
Despite only coming into existence last December Craobh Loch gCarman is one of the fastest growing branches in the land. To say it has bedded down nicely would be an understatement such is the speed as which the group has developed and the success it has enjoyed in competition. Indeed the branch is very well represented in the party heading to Fleadh Cheoil na hÉireann in Ennis next weekend.
Looking ahead the Wexford Comhaltas group has a busy Autumn to look forward to with music classes returning to the various centres within the catchment area. There will be monthly sessions, a céilí or two and a Fringe Festival Song and Story Night.
Wexford Comhaltas has also been asked to take part in the 2016 Culture Night celebrations on Friday, September 16 which is expected to be one of the highlights of the autumn calendar.