By Grainne McCool
Thousands of people gathered in Derry’s Guildhall Square yesterday evening for the spectacular opening of Fleadh Cheoil na hEireann 2013. The city centre has never before seen such crowds.
Uachtarán na hÉireann Micheál Ó hUiginn, spoke very eloquently to the crowds and emphasised that Ireland has left a cultural and musical legacy all over the world. He said that the Fleadh Cheoil now “celebrates that legacy”, and praised the country for retaining the national language and using the tradition of music to kept the culture and language alive all over the world.
Deputy First Minister Martin McGuinness said that Derry is now “moving forward”, and that he believes that the city is very much a united one that is preparing the way for the next generation. He welcomed the Fleadh and wished it every success over the coming week.
A number of musicians played at the opening ceremony and a few showers didn’t dampen anyone’s spirits. The sun shone for most of the evening and Derry welcomed the world in style. A great week of authentic Irish music and culture is definitely in store.