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Folklore: Feis in 1910

GUEST,JTT 14 Aug 13 - 06:22 PM
Matthew Edwards 14 Aug 13 - 07:13 PM
MartinRyan 14 Aug 13 - 07:27 PM
MartinRyan 14 Aug 13 - 07:34 PM
MartinRyan 14 Aug 13 - 07:38 PM
Matthew Edwards 14 Aug 13 - 08:00 PM
Matthew Edwards 14 Aug 13 - 08:06 PM
GUEST,JTT 15 Aug 13 - 02:54 AM
MartinRyan 15 Aug 13 - 03:22 AM
Gutcher 15 Aug 13 - 03:41 PM
Matthew Edwards 15 Aug 13 - 05:05 PM
GUEST,JTT 16 Aug 13 - 04:43 PM
Gutcher 17 Aug 13 - 02:03 AM
GUEST 17 Aug 13 - 07:18 AM
MartinRyan 17 Aug 13 - 07:21 AM
GUEST,Peter Laban 17 Aug 13 - 07:35 AM
MartinRyan 17 Aug 13 - 07:40 AM
GUEST,Peter Laban 17 Aug 13 - 08:00 AM
GUEST,Peter Laban 17 Aug 13 - 08:14 AM
MartinRyan 17 Aug 13 - 08:15 AM
Gutcher 17 Aug 13 - 08:16 AM
GUEST,Peter Laban 17 Aug 13 - 08:16 AM
GUEST,Peter Laban 17 Aug 13 - 08:18 AM
GUEST,JTT 17 Aug 13 - 01:35 PM
MartinRyan 17 Aug 13 - 08:32 PM
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Subject: Folklore: Feis in 1910
From: GUEST,JTT
Date: 14 Aug 13 - 06:22 PM

I'm reading some unpublished diaries from the early part of the 20th century, and in one there's some action at a feis opened by 'Dr Henebry'. Is there any way of knowing what part of Ireland this took place in?


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Subject: RE: Folklore: Feis in 1910
From: Matthew Edwards
Date: 14 Aug 13 - 07:13 PM

The Irish Traditional Music Archive (ITMA) a digitised copy of a programme for the Feis na Mumham 1910 held in Cork, but my browser is having trouble reading the individual pages for any length of time so I can't confirm Dr Henebry's involvement nor the exact location.

Another page in the ITMA catalogue has a brief biography of Dr Richard Henebry/ Risteard de Hindeberg 1863-1916, and there is an article by Ciaran Carson in the online Journal of Music about Dr Henebry The Musical Priest.

He sounds like a very interesting character who knew Francis O'Neill, Roger Casement and Padraig Pearse well. He made some cylinder recordings of traditional music and song in Waterford. There is more about him in the Companion to Irish Traditional Music.

Matthew


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Subject: RE: Folklore: Feis in 1910
From: MartinRyan
Date: 14 Aug 13 - 07:27 PM

For general information on the early feiseanna, via ITMA

Click here

The Dublin feis was the largest and best known, IIRC. Joyce competed, for example.

Regards


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Subject: RE: Folklore: Feis in 1910
From: MartinRyan
Date: 14 Aug 13 - 07:34 PM

Matthew

That Feis na Mumhan programme is a fascinating document - particularly for how it displays the influence of the Catholic clergy. A quick glance shows no sign of Henebry, FWIW.

Regards


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Subject: RE: Folklore: Feis in 1910
From: MartinRyan
Date: 14 Aug 13 - 07:38 PM

The Munster feis was in Cork city, incidentally.

Regards


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Subject: RE: Folklore: Feis in 1910
From: Matthew Edwards
Date: 14 Aug 13 - 08:00 PM

Thanks, Martin.

I've switched my browser and I can read the 1910 Feis programe more clearly now. It looks fascinating, but I can't see any mention of Dr Henebry either but as he was Professor of Irish Language and Literature at the University College, Cork at the time he surely must have been involved, as the unpublished diaries mentioned above by JTT suggest.

Among the female singers I can see a Sile Ni Croinin of Macroom - I wonder if she was related to Elizabeth Cronin?

Matthew


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Subject: RE: Folklore: Feis in 1910
From: Matthew Edwards
Date: 14 Aug 13 - 08:06 PM

When was the Dublin Feis held, Martin? Wasn't Joyce beaten by some young upstart called McCormick? Whatever happened to him afterwards? :-)


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Subject: RE: Folklore: Feis in 1910
From: GUEST,JTT
Date: 15 Aug 13 - 02:54 AM

Ah, thanks very much, Martin and Matthew.

Of course Henebry would have been mobbed up with Mac Néill and Pearse if he was Professor of Irish in Cork - Mac Néill was Professor of Irish (or perhaps it was called Celtic Studies) in UCD in Dublin, and Pearse was the most radical educationalist of the time, and ran a pair of bilingual Montessori schools teaching and conversing through English and Irish.

Cork sounds right; while the diarist goes up and down regularly on the train from Waterford to Dublin, Munster was where she spent most of her time in 1910, and Cork is only a step from Waterford.

(The diary is good fun; I tried not to break the holy silence of the National Library yesterday when I came on her story of a an she met on the beach who told her of a very Protestant & Tory family - "If you went to Hell or Belfast ye wouldn't find a bitterer family."

A couple of days earlier, she writes of an acquaintance: "Of course Miss S took a strictly impartial view of the colour question in the States [this in the context of boxing match between black Johnson & white Jeffries]. I wish everyone that is impartial about that could be put in the place of a negro in a Southern town for just one week. [Johnson won, though the diarist was disappointed that - after much racist baiting over the previous weeks by Jeffries, who sounds a right piece of work, Johnson concentrated on Jeffries' injured eye and really beat the tripes out of him].)


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Subject: RE: Folklore: Feis in 1910
From: MartinRyan
Date: 15 Aug 13 - 03:22 AM

Matthew

The Dublin Feis is an annual event - and has always been so, to the best of my knowledge. I'll dig up some background when I have a chance.

Regards
p.s. I was taught Irish (and Latin!) by a Cronin from Macroom.


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Subject: RE: Folklore: Feis in 1910
From: Gutcher
Date: 15 Aug 13 - 03:41 PM

Good evening Matthew-thanks for the links to some interested reading material, have to make a post so that I can retrieve the material at a later date.
Joe.


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Subject: RE: Folklore: Feis in 1910
From: Matthew Edwards
Date: 15 Aug 13 - 05:05 PM

JTT - From what I can see about Henebry in the linked articles, he disagreed strongly with Pearse about using Irish traditional materials as a tool in the nationalist cause, but I don't know whether this was part of a wider debate or not.

Joe - It is good to hear from you. The Irish Traditional Music Archive is a superb resource which gets better every time I return to it. Have you met Grace Toland, librarian at ITMA (and a lovely singer too)? She is passionate about making materials widely available online.

The Mudcat once had a useful guide to internet resources, but it was hard work to keep up to date as websites disappeared while new ones were added, and it also grew quite cumbersome as people added their own favourite music sites. It would be an idea to have a sort of new master index to include recent developments like The Full English Digital Archive, as well as the wonderful Tobar an Dualchais.

Matthew


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Subject: RE: Folklore: Feis in 1910
From: GUEST,JTT
Date: 16 Aug 13 - 04:43 PM

Reading further - or backwards - today, in a 1908 diary, Dr Henebry seems to have been centred in Waterford; he's at a meeting of the Gaelic League there where classes in Irish were held five nights a week, plus dancing and history classes! - and he's described as clocking and clocking for an hour or so about how one can't learn Irish from books but "ought to go to old native speakers up in Barrack St and similar beastly places".
(The writer then finds a native speaker, and notes sadly: "It is bad enough when you can't understand a native-speaker's Irish, but it is worse when they can't understand yours."


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Subject: RE: Folklore: Feis in 1910
From: Gutcher
Date: 17 Aug 13 - 02:03 AM

I see from the programme that two ladies performing in the grand concert were gold medal winners at the Munster Feis in 1907, when did the feis movement start?
I was also surprised at the number of ladies competing in the piping class as nowadays one tends to associate piping of the Irish variety with men, the clue to this lies in the fact that most were members of the Cork Piping Club which must have been ahead of the times in 1910.
Matthew--I cannot remember if you have been at Fife Sing in May, if not it is well worth a visit.
Joe.
PS.--Today sees the world piping championships in Glasgow---can be seen online--weather at this time of the morning does not look too promising.


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Subject: RE: Folklore: Feis in 1910
From: GUEST
Date: 17 Aug 13 - 07:18 AM

The association between Irish piping and men is in the eye of the beholder. Over at least the past ten years or so there has been a great influx of female pipers. Maybe not something visible from a distance but certainly very visible in piping circles.

I have been teaching the pipes locally (in West Clare) and a majority of my students have been girls over the past decade.

Your observation about the Cork pipers club seems to be valid though. There are a lot of photos of John Wayland (for a while their principal teacher) in the company of young girls who played the pipes.


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Subject: RE: Folklore: Feis in 1910
From: MartinRyan
Date: 17 Aug 13 - 07:21 AM

Agreed, Anonymous Guest, no shortage of female pipers nowadays.

Regards


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Subject: RE: Folklore: Feis in 1910
From: GUEST,Peter Laban
Date: 17 Aug 13 - 07:35 AM

Sorry, that was me.


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Subject: RE: Folklore: Feis in 1910
From: MartinRyan
Date: 17 Aug 13 - 07:40 AM

When did the feis movement start?

A quick check in Fintan Vallely's excellent Companion to Irish Traditional Music (2nd. Ed.) gives:

- in a music context (there are others), the term is a contraction of "feis cheoil" meaning "music festival", often involving both classical and traditional genres.
- arose out of the work of the Gaelic League in the late 19th. C.
- first was in Dublin 1897, followed by Belfast (1898-1900) then Dublin to date, interrupted only by the 1916 Rising and the 2001 foot-and-mouth outbreak!

He also mentions that "The step dance organisations also use the term "feis" for their competition festivals; the first of these was held at Macroom (Co. Cork, Munster) in 1899." This may well have been the genesis of the Munster Feis we're discussing. I may be in ITMA (Irish Traditional Music Archive) next week and will enquire.

Regards


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Subject: RE: Folklore: Feis in 1910
From: GUEST,Peter Laban
Date: 17 Aug 13 - 08:00 AM

The Feis Ceóil Association offered prizes (first in 1897 and two additional ones in 1899) 'for the discovery and vocal or instrumental performance of Irish melodies hitherto unpublished'.

As a result musicians and singers from all over the country were brought in to the annual feisanna where they were   recorded and the performances transcribed. A number of the cylinders recorded on these occasions survive (often the wax was scraped off and the cylinders re-used) and we have the pleasure of being able to listen to pipers (Mici 'Cumba' O Suilleabhain, Dinny Delaney, Jem Byrne among them) and singers who performed there.

The intention was to publish a collection of melodies collected in this way. Unfortunately (for the collectors) the 1902 publication of Petrie's collection, Joyce's Old Irish Folk Music and Songs and Francis O'Neill's work in Chicago and eventually Roche's collection rendered the Feis Ceóil collection a non viable project. The small number of tunes and song airs not already covered by the above was eventually published as the Darley & McCall collection. This was re-printed in 1984 by Ossian publications.


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Subject: RE: Folklore: Feis in 1910
From: GUEST,Peter Laban
Date: 17 Aug 13 - 08:14 AM

Here are soem example of the Feis Ceóil cylinder recordings of pipers :

Dinny Delaney ()from Balinasloe):

Repeal of the Union - Old Hag iat the Kiln

Bean an Ti air Urlar ag Obair - Geese in the Bog


Mudcat doesn't allow guest posters to post more than a few links so I will have to use several posts, possibly spread over a lonmger time span to post these.


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Subject: RE: Folklore: Feis in 1910
From: MartinRyan
Date: 17 Aug 13 - 08:15 AM

BTW, JTT:

Henebry was born in Waterford and made some early field recordings in that county. There's quite a lot about him in the Companion.

Regards


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Subject: RE: Folklore: Feis in 1910
From: Gutcher
Date: 17 Aug 13 - 08:16 AM

Thanks Martin the Feis and the Mod here in Scotland probably started around the same time.
My experience of Irish piping is confined to the Sligo/Lietrim area during our bi-annual visits, where to the casual visitor they are thin on the ground and all are men with the same in these parts.
The upsurge in lassies playing the pipes is mirrored here in Scotland by the number of girls taking up the fiddle over the same period.


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Subject: RE: Folklore: Feis in 1910
From: GUEST,Peter Laban
Date: 17 Aug 13 - 08:16 AM

Mici 'Cumba' O Sulleibheann (of Sneem):

Gol na mBan san Ar


A collection of cylinders belonging to Dr Henebry also survives with some fine piping and singing, I don't know any on-line locations for it though (I have some of it on tape though).


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Subject: RE: Folklore: Feis in 1910
From: GUEST,Peter Laban
Date: 17 Aug 13 - 08:18 AM

The system rejected my links to the Jem Byrne cylinders so I will leave it at that for now.


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Subject: RE: Folklore: Feis in 1910
From: GUEST,JTT
Date: 17 Aug 13 - 01:35 PM

MartinRyan Thanks - what's the Companion?

Part of today's harvest is a killing description of a ferret, including "it's an engaging little creature apart from its trade".


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Subject: RE: Folklore: Feis in 1910
From: MartinRyan
Date: 17 Aug 13 - 08:32 PM

JTT
What's the Companion? "The Companion to Irish Traditional Music".

Click here - it's the basic reference work on Irish Traditional Music, really. Well worth having.

Regards


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