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General News

General News

Living Tradition Issue 126 is out now!

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Issue 126 of The Living Tradition magazine (Dec/Jan) including articles on Jack Rutter, Hannah Rarity, Sam Sweeney, John Carty, IOTA, The Shapers, The Gavin Greig Interviews part 1, Celtic Colours International Festival, Transatlantic Connection, Dec-Apr Festival Listings, news, reviews and much more.

Buy the printed version of this issue from our online shop

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Bob & Gill Berry to retire as Chippenham directors

There has been a folk festival associated with Chippenham for nearly 48 years. Starting way back in 1972 in Lacock it has grown to a huge celebration of traditional folk arts, music and dance. The 48th festival, on 24-27th May, is already shaping up to be a good one.

The Road to Peterloo

The Road To Peterloo tells the story of one of the most notorious incidents in British labour history – the Peterloo Massacre in Manchester in 1819 – through some of the many broadside ballads that were printed around the time of the event. Three singers and musicians from North West England – Pete Coe, Brian Peters and Laura Smyth - trace the story from its roots in the poverty and hunger suffered by handloom weavers in the early 19th century. Their songs describe the terrible events of the day itself, when mounted soldiers charged a peaceful crowd and killed or injured many men, women and children by their indiscriminate use of sabres, and tell of later political developments inspired by the carnage.

Broadstairs Winter Festival

A brand-new winter festival is on the horizon in Broadstairs. Organised as a fundraiser for the annual Broadstairs Folk Week, it will run from 25-27 January, with a Burns Night Ceilidh at Broadstairs Pavilion on the Friday night, and concerts in the Sarah Thorne Theatre in the afternoons and evenings of Saturday and Sunday.

Line-up changes for Allan Yn Y Fan

Welsh traditional band Allan Yn Y Fan has recently celebrated its 22nd year on the road with a major European tour. Since starting the tour in September, the band has clocked up over 3500 miles, with dates in Luxembourg, Germany, England and Wales.

Moves afoot for Shepley Spring Festival

After a small event last year following the death of Shepley co-director, James McKinlay, the festival is back this May and is making some big changes – it is moving to a new indoor site.

TG4 Gradam Ceoil

The 2019 winners of the TG4 Gradam Ceoil awards have been announced. Winning the accolade of Musician of the Year is Meath based flute player, Catherine McEvoy. The Young Musician award goes to accordion player Conor Connolly, Singer of the Year goes to Thomas McCarthy, the Musical Collaboration award goes to Tríona Ní Dhomhnaill, the Outstanding Contribution award to Brendan Mulkere, while the Lifetime Achievement award goes to Nicky and Anne McAuliffe. Congratulations all.

Annotated discography of Peter Kennedy’s recordings now available

Peter Kennedy was an English folk song collector who died in 2006. After his death, the files associated with his recordings were passed on to the British Library for future researchers to explore and use. For many years, Reg Hall has been working with the files, and as a result, a 352 page document entitled Peter Kennedy’s Published Recordings Of British And Irish Traditional Music And Related Material: An Annotated Discography, has now been published and is available to read from the Vaughan Williams Memorial Library website.

Máire Ní Chathasaigh to feature in RTÉ Lyric FM’s anniversary commission

RTÉ lyric FM is celebrating its 20th birthday by commissioning three new works, with a total prize fund of €14,000 available to composers born or living in Ireland. These new compositions will be performed live by the RTÉ National Symphony Orchestra and RTÉ Philharmonic Choir at a gala concert on 1st May 2019. One of the three pieces will be a 10-15 minute Irish harp concerto in three movements, and traditional musician Máire Ní Chathasaigh has been selected to be the soloist, featuring alongside the RTÉ National Symphony Orchestra.

Nigel Forster burglary

Back in June, luthier Nigel Forster’s Hexham workshop was robbed and over £40,000 worth of stock was stolen – a staggering loss for the instrument maker who has had to refund customers who had already paid towards the items stolen. A list of what was taken, including photographs, is available to read on Nigel’s website, and he asks people in the music community to be vigilant, as the various guitars and other instruments, including a Model O Celtic mandolin, an eight string sapele and spruce mandola, a 1970s Fender MusicMaster bass guitar, a Ralph Plumb viola, and several other pieces, are distinctive and identifiable and may well appear at some stage.