|The Glens of Antrim
Comhaltas branch is based in Cushendall area and promotes the
playing of traditional music, song and dance by all age groups
in the local community. The branch is affiliated to the Antrim
County Board, the Ulster Council of CCE and the national organisation
which is based in Dublin.
|The branch was formed
in 1986 and named the Cushendall branch since at that time there
was a Glens of Antrim branch in Carnlough. The name was changed
to "Glinnte Aontroma" in 1999.The branch works closely
with the Glens Traditions Group who organise weekly music classes.
The branch organises sessions every Sunday (summer excluded)
in the Old School House for musicians, of all ability levels,
all ages and any instrument.
|There is also a weekly sessions
on Friday nights in Joe McCollams Pub. Also, several times a
year we run ‘Session & Ceili in the local Boat Club.
These nights are always very enjoyable with the Christmas night
being ‘special’ Another highlight is our annual
dinner which is always very well supported – usually around
100 people. After dinner we are treated to a programme of music
and dance and then all hands on the floor for a step or two.
|Our musicians provide
the music for the now famous ‘Irelands longest Waves of
Tory’ which runs on the final night of the ‘Heart
of the Glens Festival’ in August. This event attracts
thousands of people each year with up to 3000 people dancing
along the village street. It takes 10 marches played three times
each twice through! To get through the marching bit we play
10 marches double three times over! The branch also have run
many charity events over the year raising thousands of pounds.
One of the more notable charity events was funding a fishing
boat after the dreadful hardship caused by the Tsunami in 2005.
||In 1999 a group
of musicians and parents took part in an exchange visit to the
Fringnano region in Italy. This region, around the town of Pavullo,
has a Celtic tradition. In 2000 the branch produced a 1 hour
video highlighting the level of traditional music, song and
dance present in the Glens, linking the tradition with performers
dating back over fifty years. Musicians from the branch make
regular appearances at various functions and work closely with
visiting musicians such as the Culra group from England.
our members regularly attend various schools like the Frankie
Kennedy winter school, the South Sligo Summer School in Tubercurry,
the Joe Mooney Summer School in Drumshanbo and others. The branch
have also hosted the county Antrim Fleadh on many occasions.||