Arts Council Cuts Traditional Music Festivals by 41%
Following the news last October that the Arts Council had reduced its main traditional arts funding by 26%, it has now also cut funding to traditional music festivals by 41%, from €73,815 to €43,254.
The cuts were announced in the latest round of funding under the Festival and Events Scheme. While fifteen festivals were supported last year, just eight were offered funding for 2016.
Funding for several festivals was cut completely, including the harp festival An Chúirt Chruitireachta, which is now in its 31st year. This decision has shocked the harp sector given the Arts Council’s recent commissioning of a report into the harp in Ireland and its commitment to developing the sector.
Four Gaeltacht-based festivals – Éigse an Spidéil, Cruinniú na bhFlúit, Scoil Cheoil an Earraigh and Tionól Niocláis Tóibín – were also refused funding, as well as the NYAH festival in Cavan and the Skerries Traditional Music Weekend in Dublin.
Funding for the traditional arts has fallen consistenly since 2008, despite the fact that the Arts Council has received an increase in funding for the past two years.
In the music category, funding was also cut by 9%, from €109,850 to €100,400. Lismore Music Festival, the 34th Irish Composition Summer School, Music in Kilkenny and Music for Wexford received no funding. The Westport Festival of Chamber Music and New Ross Piano Festival received increases of €2,000 and €3,000 respectively, and the new Ortús Festival, founded by Mairéad Hickey and Sinéad O’Halloran, received €9,770.
A total of €400,134 was awarded under the scheme to 43 organisations from 113 applications. The breakdown across all art forms is as follows: Music: €100,400 (↓9%), Multi-disciplinary: €100,000 (↓11%), Literature: €52,410 (↑45%), Traditional Arts: €43,264 (↓41%), Theatre: €29,500 (↑111%), Film: €29,000 (↑71%), Visual Arts: €26,810 (↑3%), Young People, Children and Education: €9,500 (no funding in this category for Round 1 in 2015), Dance: €9,250 (no funding in this category for Round 1 in 2015).
The panellists were Dominic Campbell, Mary Hickson, Paul Fahy and Sinead O’Reilly.
Full details of the Traditional Arts and Music awards can be seen below. For more, visit http://www.artscouncil.ie/funding-decisions/
Festivals and Events Scheme 2016 (round 1)
Corofin Traditional Festival
Féile na Tána – Traditional Arts Festival on the Cooley Peninsula
Inishowen Traditional Singers’ Circle – 27th Inishowen International Folk Song and Ballad Seminar
Oidhreacht an Chláir – 4th Annual Concertina Cruinniú
Feile Chois Cuain
Jim Dowling Uileann Pipe And Traditional Music Festival
Carrickmacross Comhaltas – Féile Patrick Byrne 2016
John McKenna Traditional Music Festival
New Ross Piano Festival
Ortús Chamber Music Festival
Ballydehob Jazz Festival
Killaloe Chamber Music Festival
Symphony Club of Waterford – 2016 Season
Clifden Arts Society – Monthly Recitals
Galway Early Music Festival
Classicallinks: Westport Festival of Chamber Music
Bottlenote Music: String Theory – State of the Art Guitar
Irish Composers’ Collective – 2016 Concert Series
Dún Laoghaire Organ Festival – Weekly Concerts
Coole Music and Arts: Ninth Annual Coole Music Orchestra Festival