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02/08/2021

Musical lockdown innovation in Donegal

'Splendid Isolation: Féile na hInse' premiering online

'Splendid Isolation: Féile na hInse' premiering online

'Splendid Isolation: Féile na hInse' premiering online

Lockdown innovation has led to an exciting new music project in Donegal.

Entitled 'Splendid Isolation: Féile na hInse', the project comprises the music, words and imagery of 80 of Inishowen's young traditional musicians and was created during lockdown 2020.

The event will be premiered on the Inishowen Traditional Music Facebook page on Sunday, January 31, at 8pm.

Speaking to Donegal Live, Roisin McGrory, one of the ambitious projects co-organisers, said: “As part of Feile na hInse 2020, the Inishowen Traditional Music Project devised a project ‘Splendid Isolation’, for traditional musicians under 18 years to capture a record of this time in lockdown.

“Musicians throughout Inishowen were invited to explore and create a film - a visual montage and accompanying soundscape, which captured the mood and feelings, both positive and negative of Inishowen during the pandemic.

“Eighty traditional musicians registered for the project. The first stage of the project was for participants to create a video which captured how they spent lockdown. The videos were taken over the various lockdown tiers. Inishowen Traditional Music Project engaged Tola Custy, a highly acclaimed artist and fiddler, to arrange and develop the music inspired from the videos.

“Due to Covid-19 restrictions, workshops were carried out online over a three-week period to the young participants. Both old and new compositions were used to compliment the videos. Tola Custy and guest musicians Laoise Kelly (harp) and Alan Doherty (whistle) mentored and tutored the participants in the delivery of the work. As restrictions were lifted the recording of 80 musicians and their music was carried out under Covid-19 regulations in Moville Community College on December 7 and 8,” said Roisin.

Rosin also extended thanks to The Arts Council of Ireland Festival, and the Ireland Funds, which assisted the project.

She added: “Inishowen Traditional Music Project would like to thank all the musicians who have kept the music alive over lockdown through our online weekly concert series during July and August, and all the singers who took part in Amhráin Inis Eoghain. These videos can still be viewed on the Inishowen Traditional Music Facebook page.”

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