Londubh (Ireland)

Londubh is a group of young champion musicians and dancers who came together especially to perform at Amritavarsham50. They have all won medals at All-Ireland Fleadhs [competitions]. The group is from County Donegal, North West Ireland where Gaelic [Irish] is still spoken in remote parts.

The ancestry of Irish traditional music is related to the Celtic traditions of Europe. Among its first practitioners were the Druids (Celtic sages), who arrived in Ireland from central Europe more than 2,000 years ago. A rich heritage of Irish songs, music and dance has emerged over the centuries and it continues to be passed down within families from generation to generation. The dances were traditionally performed in any place and at any time, and related to the context of daily life, which gave them vibrancy and an independent spirit.

String, wind, and reed instruments, especially fiddle, harp, whistle, flute, uilleann pipes (bagpipes), concertina and accordion are played. The bodhran, a goatskin drum, is also widely used. The costumes worn by the dancers are based on the Irish peasant dress worn 200 years ago. They are adorned with hand- embroidered Celtic designs. Dancers wear special hornpipe shoes, and for reels and jigs, they wear pumps, soft shoes similar to those used for ballet.

The group comprises Marie McCallion, Rosemarie McCallion, Donna Elliot, Tracy Gallagher, Charlene Hegarty (dancers), Denise Boyle (fiddle/viola), Deirdre Brennan (bodhran, keyboards), Cait McGinley (fiddle), Clare McGonagle (fiddle), Maeve Ward (harp), Paula Houton (flute/tin whistle), Melanie Houton (fiddle) and Simone McLoughlin (drum).

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