I ndiaidh na Fleidhe

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Bhí Fleadh Cheoil na hÉireann 2013 ar fheabhas: d’fhreastal leathmhilliún nach mór ar an ócáid.

Chomh maith leis sin, bhí daoine gan áireamh ag amharc ar an Fhleadh ar an teilifís gach oíche agus ag éisteacht léi ar an raidió ar fud na cruinne. Thug an Fhleadh íomhá iontach den chathair, chan amháin ó thaobh an chultúir de: Cathair na Gairneoireachta a bhí ann chomh maith, mar gheall ar na mílte bláth ar fud na háite.

Rinne Comhaltas Ceoltóirí Éireann agus foireann na Cultúrlainne an-jab. Bhí na himeachtaí uilig thar barr. Chuir an bhaint a bhí ag eagraíochtaí eile áthas an tsaoil orm, mar shampla na hEaglaisí, an Ollscoil, Cumann Gaelach Chnoc na Rós, Ord Ársa na nÉireannach, dánlanna, amharclanna, agus lárionaid chultúrtha éagsúla. Cuireann ábaltacht agus díograis na ndaoine óga iontas ort.

Bhí atmaisféar na Mór-roinne ag Doire, le ceoltóirí ar na sráideanna, le daoine ag siúl thart ar a suaimhneas, le daoine ina suí taobh amuigh de na caifí. Ní fhaca mé meisceoir ar bith: rinne na maoir obair an-mhaith.

Bhí cuairteoirí as gach cearn ann: labhair mé Gaeilge le daoine ó Ghaeltacht Phort Láirge go Gort an Choirce. (Níl mé claonta.) Caithfidh mé tagairt speisialta a dhéanamh do Choláiste Mhig Aoidh. Thug Peadar Mac Gabhann léacht an-suimiúil ar amhráin Ghaeilge Thír Eoghain. Thug Maxim Fomin ( (Rúiseach) léacht den scoth ar scéalta traidisiúnta a bhaineann leis an fharraige - i nGaeilge líofa. Mar a deirim go minic, tá níos mó measa ag eachtrannaigh ar chultúr na nGael ná mar atá ag an chuid is mó de na hÉireannaigh féin. Tá ardmholadh tuillte ag na meáin: fuair an Fhleadh tuairisciú iontach ó TG4, ó Raidió na Gaeltachta, ón BBC, ó na stáisiúin tráchtála agus ó na nuachtáin áitiúla. Dhéanfainn tagairt speisialta don Journal, ach déarfaí go bhfuil mé claonta.

Fleadh Cheoil na hÉireann 2013 was first-rate: almost half a million people attended the event.

Over and above that, countless numbers of people watched the Fleadh on television and listened to it on the radio all over the world.

The Fleadh projected a marvellous image of the city, not only regarding culture: it was also the City of Horticulture, with thousands of flowers throughout the town. Comhaltas Ceoltóirí Éireann and the Cultúrlann did a fine job. Every event was simply excellent.

I was delighted with the involvement of other organisations, for example, the Churches, the University, Cumann Gaelach Chnoc na Rós, the Hibernians, galleries, theatres and various cultural centres.

The ability and enthusiasm of the young people was amazing.

Derry had a continental atmosphere, with street musicians, people strolling around, people sitting outside of cafes. I did not see any drunks about: the stewards did a fine job.

There were visitors from all over: I chatted with speakers from the Waterford Gaeltacht to Gortahork. ( I am not prejudiced.)

I must give Magee College a special mention. Peadar Mac Gabhann delivered a most interesting lecture on songs in Irish from Tyrone.

Maxim Fomin (from Russia) gave an excellent lecture on traditional tales of the sea – in fluent Irish.

As I often say, people from other countries show more respect for Irish culture than most of the Irish themselves do.

The media deserve high praise: the Fleadh got excellent coverage from TG4, Raidió na Gaeltachta, the BBC, from the commercial stations and from the local press. I would give the Journal a special mention, but people would say that I am biased.