Set up in 1896, Feis Ceoil Association promotes excellence in the learning and performance of music across all ages, levels and disciplines. We run an annual festival before Easter each year in Dublin which comprises almost 200 competitions, attracting over 5,000 participants from all over the island of Ireland. We also run non-competitive events and concerts throughout the rest of the year.
Feis Ceoil occupies a unique position in Irish life. It is an essential element in the musical infrastructure of the country and has made an immeasurable contribution to the study and cultivation of music at all levels in Ireland. The Association looks to the future with confidence and welcomes the opportunity of going forward to a fully professional level under new sponsorship.
Feis Ceoil was founded by the chief representatives of music activity in Ireland under the guidance of Dr. Annie Patterson, to counteract the neglect of music development in this country. It consisted of competitions for performance and composition and was supported by all musicians of the day, both national and classical. Since then the Feis has undergone many changes to accommodate the development of music in Ireland. Gone are the competitions for Bamboo Pipes and the Whistling of Irish Airs!
Today, Feis Ceoil is an event of major significance in the development of musical talent in Ireland. To be successful at the Feis is very important in the musical career of many entrants, for many others it is a means of obtaining enhanced enjoyment from their music while also providing a yardstick by which to measure their personal standards.
Feis Ceoil has now expanded to more than 180 competitions, covering all ages from 7 years upwards.