Dr Labhrás Ó’ Murchú, Ardstiúrthóir, Comhaltas Ceoltóiri Éireannofficially launched Fleadh Cheoil na hÉireann 2018 at a ceremony in the Westcourt Hotel, Drogheda on Wednesday evening. This will be the 68thFleadh Cheoil na hÉireann and for the first time in it’s history the Fleadh will be held on the north east coast of Ireland.
Dr Labhrás Ó’ Murchú, said: “Fleadh Cheoil na hÉireann is now the largest and most unique cultural festival in the world. Its significance is cultural, economic and social and it is a tribute to all those who kept our cultural traditions alive down through the decades. Drogheda is an ideal venue for this celebration of whom we are as a people.”
Pat Flanagan, national P.R.O. of Comhaltas acted as Fear an Tí for the nightand Comhaltas musicians, singers and dancers from Drogheda and all parts of Co. Louth entertained the invited audience which included Vince Jordan, the newly elected Uachtarán of Comhaltas. Members of the Ardchomhairle of Comhaltas joined with politicians, volunteers, sponsors and Comhaltas members from all parts of the country, to welcome the Fleadh to Drogheda.
Fleadh Cheoil na hÉireann 2018 will have a significant emphasis on youth with children’s mid- morning sessions organised to run from Monday through to Thursday from 11.00 a.m. -12.00 p.m. in the Barbican Centre. The aim is to cater for children under the age of 12 that play music but are not attending Scoil Éigse. It will also offer an extensive youth programme which aims to increase student’s awareness of Irish culture and tradition and encourage them to become actively involved in the Fleadh.
Fiddles and bodhrans which were made by the Drogheda Men’s Shed and decorated by secondary school students in the town were on display at the launch and these will be displayed in various shops throughout the town during the Fleadh in August.
Families will be well catered for with lots of events at Seachtain na Gaeilge and the Mid Morning Sessions in the Barbican Centre which will be hosted by Sean O’Laoire, well known singer and Gaeilgeoir from Co. Meath.
Tickets are now available to purchase for Fleadh Cheoil na hÉireann 2018 and the line-up of events and performances, which will take place every day from Sunday 12th through to Sunday 19th August 2018, is available to view at www.fleadhcheoil.ie