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RTÉ Raidió na Gaeltachta presenter, musician and composer Peadar Ó Riada has initiated a competition on his radio programme Cuireadh chun Ceoil to find the best traditional Irish fiddler.  The winner will receive a gold medal, Bonn Óir Sheáin Uí Riada, named in honour of Peadar’s father Seán Ó Riada, and will be announced at a gala concert in the Rochestown Park Hotel in Cork in December.

Ó Riada’s weekly music programme Cuireadh chun Ceoil broadcasts on Friday nights on RTÉ Raidió na Gaeltachta during the summer and has a high proportion of listeners based outside the country.  The competition is intended to bring the family of listeners together, using the benefits of technology, something which Peadar feels has created a great democracy within music.

‘New technology, in a way, is a great contributor to democracy within music.  With new technology, any musician can record themselves and send in their music to us here for the competition.  They could use an iphone to record their pieces and send them in, for example.  We have a section on my website,, where people can submit their entries and post comments.  We’d like to develop a network of musicians and listeners all over the world’.

Technical proficiency is not enough to win this competition, however, and entrants must also demonstrate creativity and musicality in their playing.  Peadar feels that there is presently too much of an emphasis on technicality in music, and that there are a lot of professional competitors who learn what judges want and produce same, winning many competitions in that way.  This approach, however, has meant that the vital importance of musicality has been both overlooked and underestimated, and this competition intends to address this.  Entrants will be judged by renowned musicians Martin Hayes, Sean Keane and Liam O’Connor.

Musicians must submit 5 pieces of music, and can do so via the website  2010 will be the first year in a four year cycle, with the competition this year focusing on the fiddle, next year it will be open to flute players, to box and concertina players the following year, and finishing with harp and pipes before recommencing again with fiddle in 5 years time.

The best 15 entrants will be invited to take part in a competition in the Rochestown Park Hotel in Cork in December, and judges will make their decision on that night as to the winner.

Further Information:
Caitríona Ní Bhaoill, Press Officer, RTÉ Raidió na Gaeltachta
+353 91 506659

Permalink - Posted: August 6, 2010 at 9:49 am