While Irish festival planning is heating up across the country, the Center for Irish Music is taking a little breather after a wildly successful adventure to St. Louis for the Midwest Fleadh Cheoil.
As we gear up for summer term starting on June 11th (
), we're learning a lot about two major subjects - our new database system, and our dear friend Nick Coleman, who passed away just days after spending a weekend with over 70 CIM friends in St. Louis and winning a gold medal in recitation.
There isn't much to say about our new database system other than thanks to our students and staff for their patience in the coming transition. The new system will save CIM precious staff time while also gathering piles of handy data to help us to serve you better. Please don't hesitate to call or email us with any questions about the new system.
On Nick Coleman - other than wishing I'd been cooped up in his minivan more times with my microphone on - Nick's final gift to me was a stark understanding of why teaching Irish music is important. CIM students accompanied Nick's family for two days after he passed away, from the wake to the funeral, and to the graveside. It was their way of handling the shock and supporting their classmates, and I thought it was remarkable that they had the gift of music to give.
At CIM, we are teaching music for life, to be played at births, deaths, ceremonies, celebrations and rites-of-passage. It's an inclusive, grassroots art form that fills space and time with rhythm and ancient Irish melodies. When there is nothing to say, do, or think, music helps us to get through a moment, and feel like human beings.
A strong contingent of talented, hard-working traditional musicians represented the Twin Cities' Irish music scene at the Midwest Fleadh, making it clear the the tradition in Minnesota is in very good hands. We sent
36 students to compete in 71 competitions, for which 54 placed in the top three. Wow!
The Spring Recitals and Open Mic on the weekend of May 18th & 20th were a blast - packed with inspiring performances of songs in both English and Irish, tunes, solos, duets, even ceili bands! Check out some of the performances on our YouTube channel in the coming days and weeks.
I hope to see you at one of the many upcoming performances listed below. This Sunday, be sure to drop by Irish on Grand for tunes (and to purchase a Father's Day gift) Grand Old Day!
Executive Artistic Director
Center for Irish Music
PS. Keep an eye out for our spring fundraiser for the Travel Fund, launching soon!