Early to Ennis
Fleadh-bound Visitors Get a Big Welcome from County Clare
While our comrades in St. Paul are gearing up for the Irish Fair of Minnesota this weekend, several CIM families have already landed in Ireland in preparation for the Fleadh Cheoil. Though we’re happy to have recovered from the jet lag, we’re a little sad to be missing out on the big red-carpet welcome Co. Clare has just started rolling out for the estimated 80,000 overseas visitors just arriving. Check out this “feis mob” of young dancers that showed up the other day at the Shannon Airport.
The news coverage around the country has been full of superlatives (a music writer in the Irish Times just compared the musical surround-sound tsunami of the fleadh to a “three-dimensional, no-holds-barred solar plexus punch”) and some astounding statistics. Organizers are expecting 400,000 visitors to Ennis next week, including 6,000 competitors and 10,000 session musicians at 400 events. And CIM students won’t be the only out-of-towners–one-fifth of all competitors come from outside Ireland.
If you’d like to follow along, be sure to download the Fleadh 2017 app from the iTunes store for a full schedule of events, and streaming coverage from TG4’s FleadhTV. We’ll also be posting updates, pictures and performance clips to this website, Facebook and Instagram (@centerforirishmusic). See you in Ennis!