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Music Generation Laois Ambassadors Spéirling Perform at the 2015 British Irish Council Summit

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The esteemed Laois-based traditional Irish music ensemble Spéirling took centre stage at Dublin Castle recently performing as Music Generation Young Ambassadors for international Heads of Government at the British Irish Council Summit.

In the historical setting of St. Patrick’s Hall, this vibrant group of young musicians performed to over 100 delegates including Martin McGuinness, Deputy First Minister of Northern Ireland; Carwyn Jones, Chief Minister of Wales; Ian Gorst, Chief Minister of Jersey; Jonathan Le Tocq, Chief Minister of Guernsey; Allan Bell, Chief Minister of Isle of Man.

Representing Ireland to an international audience Spéirling were joined by dancer Leanne Dermody performing a judiciously chosen programme Irish traditional music. This emerging contemporary Trad group described the performance opportunity as "An extremely enjoyable privilege."

No strangers to representing Ireland on the international stage, previous prestigious performances include being featured Music Generation Laois Young Ambassadors at Department of Education and Skills events during Ireland’s presidency of the EU in 2013.

Spéirling, meaning Storm, this six-member ensemble includes Cathal O’Connor (Banjo/Mandolin), Dale McKay (Bodhrán), Sinéad Keyes (Concertina), Ruth Hennessy (Fiddle), Cian McNamara (Accordion/Vocals), and Conor Casey (Guitar). Hailing from Laois and Offaly, Spéirling is a dynamic group of young musicians of note who came together in September 2012 for the Gael Linn competition, Siamsa, and since then has enjoyed considerable success. They were nominated by the Laois Music Education Partnership to perform as Music Generation Young Ambassadors at this event.

Rosaleen Molloy, National Director of Music Generation commented, “We are delighted to have received this invitation from the Department of An Taoiseach and for Music Generation Young Ambassadors to represent Ireland at such an important prestigious international event. This coveted performance opportunity is a demonstration of Government’s confidence in the work of Music Generation and in Ireland’s young musicians.”


Notes to editors
Music Generation is Ireland's National Music Education Programme that helps children and young people access high quality performance music education in their local areas. Initiated by Music Network, the programme is co-funded by U2, The Ireland Funds, The Department of Education and Skills and Local Music Education Partnerships. Music Generation Laois is managed by Laois Music Education Partnership and funded by Laois County Council, Laois VEC and Laois Partnership. For further information visit

Media Contact:
Deirdre Scully, Acting PR & Marketing Manager, Music Generation National Development Office, NCH Building Earlsfort Terrace, Dublin 2
T: 01 4758454