Lorcán Mac Mathúna’s latest album, Visionaries 1916, which is due to be released in October, honours the leaders of the 1916 Easter Rising through a creative musical use of their words.
The Easter Rising; made famous by the proclamation of an Irish Republic at its commencement, was led by artists and visionaries. The list of its seven leaders included poets, authors, musicians, and trade unionists; all revolutionary thinkers who produced a prolific literary output. Their songs and music are the subject of this new album, Visionaries 1916, an album which came from a piece of music theatre which Lorcán wrote for the Centenary celebrations of the Easter Rising, 1916 – Visionaries and Their Words. The show will be performed at the Festival Interceltique de Lorient this Thursday (August 11th) and at the All-Ireland Fleadh Cheoil in Ennis on August 16th. Other dates throughout Ireland have taken place and more are planned.
The video below is a song written by Patrick Pearse, the President of that first Irish Republic. Pearse was a prolific author, poet, editor, a revolutionary educator, and champion of the renewal of Irish language literature. Pearse fought long and hard for Irish to be given official recognition as a language of the Irish people and for it to be allowed within the education system. He then founded the first bilingual secondary school in Ireland, which practiced revolutionary student-centred teaching methods.
Óró sé do Bheatha Bhaile is a song he wrote to the melody of an old Jacobite air and which is now sung by most schoolchildren in Ireland. For this recording, we took inspiration from Pearse and involved bilingual (or maybe they are comfortable with more than two languages) children of Dublin to give this standard a sean-nós touch.
Order the album and find out more here: www.1916visionaries.ie