Soap star appointed Singer-in-Residence at Centre for Irish Studies
Tuesday, 31 January 2006
A native of Spiddal, Máire received the Gradam Sean Nós Cois na Life in 2004 in recognition of her contribution to the living tradition, both as a performer and as a teacher. She has also won Comórtas na mBan at the Oireachtas and has been runner-up in Corn Uí Riada, the premier award for sean-nós singing.
Máire also has extensive experience as an actress, both on stage and screen and is perhaps best known to television audiences for her portrayal of Máire, the sanctimonious shopkeeper, in the popular RTE soap opera, Ros na Rún.
Over the past 17 years, Máire has been involved with An Gaelacadamh, teaching children the songs that were passed on to her and which she is now handing on to a new generation, many of who have gone on to compete successfully at the Oireachtas, and at various fleadhanna ceoil.
Máire cites her mother Máire Nic an Ríogh, from An Gleann Mór, Carraroe, as a formative influence on her singing style.
"She used to sing while she was working around the house or trying to get us to sleep and those are the first songs I can remember. I had her tormented, asking her to sing the same songs over and over again," she said.
Other singers to have influenced Máire include; Pat Phádraic, Máire Chólman Nic Dhonnacha, Máire Áine Nic Dhonncha, Tom Ó Conghaile, Máirtín Phatch Ó Cúláin, Seán Mac Donncha and Seosamh Ó hÉanaí.
During her residency, Máire will participate in a series of performances and workshops at the Centre for Irish Studies and other venues throughout Connemara and the Aran Islands. She will also record her own work and that of other singers.
Workshops at the Centre for Irish Studies will commence on Tuesday 14 February 2006 at 7.00pm and will run until Easter.
The project is funded by Ealaín na Gaeltachta, Údarás na Gaeltachta and An Chomhairle Ealaíon in association with the Centre for Irish Studies at NUI Galway.