Ómós Ceoil – 50 Bliain Faoi Bhláth – a new composition by uilleann piper and flute player, Louise Mulcahy, will premiere at the Community Centre in Miltown Malbay on July 3rd as part of the opening concert of Scoil Samhraidh WIllie Clancy. The newly commissioned work celebrates the fiftieth Scoil Samhraidh Willie Clancy since its inception in 1973 and its continuously positive impact on the development of Irish traditional music, song and dance.
Reflecting her pride at being commissioned to compose the piece, Louise explains that the new work aims to commemorate the legacy of the master uilleann piper, Willie Clancy, and the school’s founding members: Muiris Ó Rócháin, Martin Talty, Séamus Mac Mathúna, Paddy Joe McMahon and Junior Crehan. “The new work celebrates the ethos of the school and the joy it brings so many people from all around the world each year,” she says.
An accomplished performer and tutor at the Willie Clancy Summer School, Louise has been coming to the Willie Clancy Week since she was a child and considers the school a formative influence on her musical development. “Throughout the years, I have very special memories attending Scoil Samhraidh Willie Clancy with my family,” she says. “The Summer School has been a hugely important part of my life from a very early age. I have been inspired on multiple levels by the musicians and people I have met. I feel so fortunate to be part of the Summer School each year. Like so many other people the first week of July is a very special part of my musical calendar.”
Louise comes from a noted traditional music family and regularly plays with her father, Mick, and sister, Michelle. She is currently researching the history of women in uilleann piping in the 20th century. Her research work and musical accomplishments have been widely recognised – including by two major awards: the Arts Council’s Markievicz Award in 2021 and the Liam O’Flynn Award, sponsored jointly by the Arts Council and the National Concert Hall in 2022.