Image shown: Bantry Community Choir

On June 21 each year, music making is celebrated all around the world, under a variety of festival names, such as: Fête de la Musique, Love Live Music or World Music Day. This tradition has been going on since 1982 and has become an international phenomenon, celebrated on the same day in more than 460 cities in 110 countries. A wide variety of events celebrates different musical styles, with an emphasis on enjoyment and participation or in the words of Maurice Fleuret where ‘the music is everywhere and the concert nowhere’. In many countries the celebrations take place in community venues, on the streets and in public spaces, including healthcare facilities. Arts + Health Co-coordinators Ireland (AHCI) is an all-Ireland support network of professionals who are responsible for managing arts and health initiatives. To celebrate World Music Day, AHCI have organised an eclectic array of music performances and workshops throughout Ireland over the week end of June 19 -22. All the events are free of charge.

In the Rebel County of Cork, all are welcome to the First Midsummer Festival of Music in Cork University Hospital, for one fabulous day only, on Friday June 19 from 10am until 9pm. An exciting line up includes: music therapy and fun music making workshops for children with Capella Sherwood and friends, a gramophone recital, choral performances with The Brave hearts Choir, The CUH Work Place Choir and The Polyphonics. There will also be performances by traditional musicians from Inchegealla and Billy Horgan and Friends Jazzz band …. not to be missed!

A little further South in Skibbereen, West Cork Arts Centre is collaborating with West Cork Mental Health Services to host a day for all the family on Sunday 21 June, in the courtyard at Uillinn, starting at 3pm. This event welcomes all to join in a global celebration of music making and community, accompanied by The Happiness Ensemble, Clon Drums, Bantry Community Choir, traditional music with Ann Coughlan and friends. There will be an instrument making workshop with Peter Fitzgerald of the Happiness Ensemble for children of 8 years and over. An Open Door music session, to which all musicians are welcome to contribute, will conclude this event.

In the sunny South East, Waterford Healing Arts Trust (WHAT) is delighted to present a unique fusion of traditional Irish and Indian music and dance as part of its Healing Sounds in the foyer programme, at University Hospital Waterford on Monday 22 June at 1.30pm.. This event will showcase the music of Casóg, a talented group of young traditional musicians. There will also be a performance of Indian dance in traditional dress by Indian adults and children who have made Waterford their home.

In Dublin’s fair city, Our Lady’s Hospice & Care Services and the National Centre for Arts and Health will host two music recitals in celebration of World Music Day. These free events are open to residents, patients, families and staff of both institutions. Our Lady’s Hospice & Care Services music therapist Martin Fahy will play piano and Dr Hilary Moss from the National Centre for Arts and Health will play trombone. The duo will perform from 1-1.40pm on Friday 19 June in the restaurant in Harold’s Cross then repeat the performance at Tallaght Hospital main atrium on Monday 22 June at 1pm.

St Patricks Mental Health Service are hosting an ‘in house’/’by invite only’ traditional music session with Mairead O’ Donnell and Mischa O’Mahony and also a Tribal Sprit Drumming Workshop with Tom Quinn on Sunday June 21.

Finally, out West in the city of the Tribes, Galway University Hospitals Arts Trust presents singing duo The Couple, who will perform an acoustic set in the foyer of University Hospital Galway at 6.00pm. Multi instrumentalists, The Couple will play a varied repertoire of both traditional and contemporary music to suit all tastes. The Trust will also present a live performance by Sean Nós Singer Ceara Conway in Unit 4, Merlin Park University Hospital, Galway at 2.00pm.

For further details about specific events for World Music Day 2015, please click here.

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