The work and contributions of well-known Gaoth Dobhair man, Tomás Mac Giolla Bhrighde, will be the theme of this year’s Éigse Uladh.
Mr. Mac Giolla Bhríghde, who died last December, was synonymous with the Aisteorí Ghaoth Dobhair and theatre in the Gaeltacht, though his contributions to his home place did not end there.
Pól Ó Gallchóir, director general of TG4, will perform the official opening of the Éigse at 8pm, Friday, at the Acadamh na hOllscolaíochta Gaeilge, Pairc Ghnó Ghaoth Dobhair.
Following the opening, at 8.15pm, Noel Ó Gallchóir, headmaster of Pobalscoil Ghaoth Dobhair and a good friend of Mr. Mac Giolla Bhríghde, will deliver the opening-night talk entitled “Tomás Mac Giolla Bhríghde, his life and work”, a talk chaired by Dónall Ó Cnaimhsí. Refreshments and music by the young trad group, An Crann Óg, will follow.
The Éigse will continue on Saturday with the exhibition and sale of Irish books at the cultural and community centre, An Crannóg, Derrybeg, at 12 noon. At 3.30pm at An Crannóg, three programmes made by TG4 will be screened: The first will be “Aisteoirí Ghaoth Dobhair 2002”, which will be followed by an interview with the late Tomás Mac Giolla Bhríghde that was recorded in 2009. The third short film screened will be “Fód an Dúchais”, which was made in 1969.
Drama lovers will be in for a treat on Saturday evening with the presentation of four plays staged by the students of Pobalscoil Ghaoth Dobhair at Acadamh na hOllscolaíochta Gaeilge.
In an evening of theatre that starts at 8pm on Saturday, the first presentation will be a one-act comedy, translated by the late Áine Nic Giolla Bhríde, titled “Cúrsaí Cleamhnais”, which will be staged by the transition-year students of the Pobalscoil. The second play, “An Pósadh”, written by Douglas Hyde, will be staged by the senior students at the school; and this will be followed by “An Corp”, staged by the second-year students and based on a short story written by Mícheál Ó Siochfhranda. The final play staged will be the newly written play, “Fileann an Feall”.
This year’s Éigse Uladh concludes with the Éigse mass on Sunday, celebrated in St. Mary’s Church, Derrybeg at 11am.
Tomás Mac Giolla Bhrighde directed and influenced generations of actors in the Gaoth Dobhair Gaeltacht. He joined Aisteoirí Ghaoth Dobhair in 1938 and served as the group’s director since 1981 and was involved with drama at the pobalscoil over many years.
Mr. Mac Giolla Bhrighde was also among the group of men who 50 years ago established the area industrial estate, Pairc Ghnó Ghaoth Dobhair and was a member of the Chartered Accountants of Ireland and the Irish Tax Institute.
Also as part of the Éigse the recitation competition, “An Béal Binn” will take place in Pobalscoil Ghaoth Dobhair on Saturday, March 29th. The Éigse is organised by Coiste Éigse Uladh in association with Comharchumann Forbartha Ghaoth Dobhair. More information from 074 95 32208 or 074 95 31008.