For festival lovers we are entering the warmer months now and there are a number of festivals coming up in May
Cup of Tae Festival Adara, Co. Donegal, 4th - 7th May
Tueday 24 January 2012 was a sad day for many associated with the cup of tae festival as the man who is the inspiritation for the festival John The Tae Gallagher died. John the all Ireland Oireachtas twice in 1956 and 59 and was as Ciaran Mathuna often said probably the best fiddle player of all time . It is eleven years since the festival was launched in Johns honour and really anyone who has not attended this festival has not experienced the wonderful event that is the Cup of Tae Festival
Baltimore Fiddle Festival 9th - 13th May 2012
The Baltimore Fiddle Fair has grown and prospered and today is recognised as being one of the very best traditional and folk music festivals anywhere in the world.The first few years it consisted of two weekends of music in McCarthy's featuring mainly local musicians with the odd one thrown in from up the country. The very first Fiddle Fair line-up included Nomos, Any Old Time, Seamus Creagh, Dordan, Ritchie Tisdall and Steve Wickham.
Over the next few years it gradually gained a reputation amongst musicians as being a great festival at which to play. This was due to several reasons such as the intimacy of the venue, the appreciative audiences, and the stunning location. Audiences loved it because it gave them the chance to see truly world-class performers in a beautiful little village in West Cork.
The festival took a leap forward in 1998 when Guinness came on board as a sponsor thus enabling us to afford to bring artists from further afield. Many musicians also spread the word and pretty soon The Fiddle Fair became one of the hottest festivals on the calendar.
Fleadh Nua Ennis 20th - 28th May
There are many Irish traditional festivals organised throughout the summer months but there are few people who will dispute that Fleadh Nua which started in Dublin in 1970, is the forerunner of them all. The concept of bringing together concerts, céilithe, music, song and dancing workshops, street entertainment, pageants/parades and much more was innovative in its time. However, it's still a winning formula today as evidenced by the thousands of visitors who flock to the festival every May for a week of unsurpassed traditional entertainment.
All roads, old and new will lead to Ennis and Fleadh Nua in May 2012.
Skerries Traditional Music Weekend 18th - 20th May
This picturesque seaside town plays host to a weekend full of music, song and dance reflecting the unique culture of the Fingal region. Leading artists travel to Skerries where they join with locals and visitors in a celebration of Irish heritage. This year the Weekend kicks off with the Schools Outreach Programme on Friday morning when local musicians visit primary schools in the area providing an interactive workshop and demonstration of various traditional Irish instruments.
The 10th Celebration last May featured the debut performance of The Future Generation of Fingal Musicians on Friday night. 2011 also saw the return of the much revered Singing Session as well as a Masterclass in Cape Breton Style Fiddling. And for the first time they had Music on the Street providing outdoor entertainment on the Saturday afternoon.
The energetic music of the tutors can be heard in Skerries Mills on the Sunday morning, by now a deep-rooted element of the Weekend. The 2011 festivities culminated in the return of the Focus on Fingal event to the spectacular grounds of Ardgillan Castle featuring a unique blend of music, song and dance from the local region.
This years festival takes place on May 18th, 19th & 20th of May. Make sure you don’t miss out on a wonderful weekend.
Finally jumping back across the water the Northwest Folklife festival takes place on May 25th - 28th in Seattle Washington.
If your May festival is not included above please post a comment here