Sean O Riada Gold Medal – Siblings Micheál and Gráinne Fitzgibbon (pictured above) are competing in both categories of Harps and Pipes
Talented Limerick brother and sister compete for Sean O Riada Gold Medal
By I Love Limerick Correspondent Tara Byrne
Brother and Sister Micheál and Gráinne Fitzgibbon from Banogue, Co. Limerick will be competing in the final for the Sean O Riada Gold Medal which will be broadcasted live from Baile Bhúirne, Co. Cork, on the Cuireadh Chun Ceoil programme, RTÉ Raidió na Gaeltachta on Friday, May 7 from 7 pm to 9.30 pm.
This year, the traditional music competition is for harp and pipes, and there will be fifteen finalists in total, eight on harp and seven on pipes. Rté Raidió na Gaeltachta, Iontaobhas Fódhla, Comhaltas Ceoltóirí Éireann, Gael Linn, IMRO, Údarás na Gaeltachta and Cork County Council are the sponsors of this year’s competition.
Micheál (19) and Gráinne (24) Fitzgibbon have been immersed in music from a very young age. Their mother, Sheila Cagney, is a teacher in Comhaltas Ceoltóirí Éireann’s Castleconnell, Ahane, Herbertstown branch, and visiting musicians and céilí band practice was a regular feature of their home life growing up.
There will be no sibling rivalry as the pair won’t be competing directly against each other in the final, as Gráinne will be on harp and Micheál on pipes. All five siblings in the Fitzgibbon family– Gráinne, Micheál, Louise, Caoimhe and Liam – all play the harp and music is a strong family tradition that everybody takes part in.
TÉ Raidió na Gaeltachta was established to provide a full radio service to the Gaeltacht community and to Irish speakers throughout the country. The station first came on the air at 3 pm, Easter Sunday, 2 April 1972. The service broadcasts a wide selection of news and current affairs programmes, magazine programmes, music programmes of all kinds, sports and entertainment.
Peadar Ó Riada will present the final on his programme Cuireadh Chun Ceoil on RTÉ RnaG and the well-known musicians who will judge the competition will include talented Limerick musician Michelle Mulcahy from Abbeyfeale, as well as Mick O’Brien and Laoise Kelly. A winner will be picked on each instrument, each of whom will receive a Seán Ó Riada Gold Medal and €2500.
There will be no audience this year due to public health restrictions, but people can watch the final live on RTE Raidió na Gaeltachta’s Facebook page and at cuireadhchunceoil.ie, where they can show their support for the musicians. The final will be managed in full compliance with the current public health guidelines.
To watch the show live go HERE
For more stories about music go HERE