Revival/promotion/preservation of Irish Music
The revival of Irish music stems back to the foundation of the Gaelic League in 1893. It established an annual competition, the Fleadh Cheoil as a focus for its activities. Religion also played a role in the re-development of Irish culture. In 1935 the Public Dance Halls Act was introduced and curtailed the right of anyone to hold public events, from then on no public musical or dancing events could be held in a public space without a licence. A licence was usually only granted to ‘suitable persons’ eg the Parish Priest. The fleadh cheoil gave traditional musicians a platform to play to an appreciative audience. The first fleadh cheoil in 1951 attracted only a few hundred patrons but within 5 years the annual gathering had grown to become a great national festival attended by thousands of traditional musicians, singers and dancers from all parts of Ireland and overseas. Branches of Comhaltas (CCE) were formed all over Ireland, organising classes, concerts and sessions at local level. Soon there were county and provincial Fleadhanna. Comhaltas now has more than 400 branches established in every Irish county, Britain, the US, Canada, Japan, Hungary, Sardinia and Australia. Since the early 1960s pub sessions are now the home for much of Irish Traditional music, which takes place at informal gatherings in pubs. The 1960s saw a number of innovative performers eg Christy Moore and Donal Lunny. The Clancy brothers broke open the field in the US in the early part of the decade which inspired vocal groups like the Dubliners and the Chieftains. Television and radio programmes and documentaries in recent years have also helped promote Irish Music and Dance especially TG4. (Feel free to elaborate here if there are any particular programmes you have seen.) The 20th century brought the commercial success of Irish music worldwide, new instruments were added, new tunes have been composed and venues are continuously...
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