Council Cathaoirleach praises county’s volunteers at Terrylass Arts Festival

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The many volunteers who help run Terryglass Arts Festival have been praised for the work they do in organising the event.

The many volunteers who help run Terryglass Arts Festival have been praised for the work they do in organising the event.

Cllr Seamus Hanafin, Cathaoirleach, Tipperary County Council congratulated them and festival chair Emma Pearce for their commitment in supporting the annual festival.

“We should never miss an opportuntiy to recognise and acknowledge the huge contribution made by volunteers around our county,” he said at the opening of the 17th festival.

Cllr Hanafin, who described the festival as one of the pre-eminent festivals in the county, pointed out that it played a vital role in the local economy, attracting secondary spend to the area.

Praising the link between the committee and their sponsors, he said: “It is very clear that there is a very strong relationship between the festival and its sponsors. This level of co-operation and ongoing commitment is to be applauded, particularly in what has been a difficult time for businesses.”

He said that the commitment re-enforced the determination of the community to work together towards vibrant local development.

Meanwhile, the festival itself attracted huge numbers to its more than 70 workshops, concerts, shows and exhibitions, with Fidget Feet performing to an enthralled crowd on the quayside on Saturday before a spectacular fireworks display. Friday night saw a packed attendance at the festival’s highlight concert by Paddy Casey.

The festival opening night was treated to music from Ireland’s Eurovision entrant, Molly Sterling, as well as young local trad group Trad Trio, comprising Manus and Cliona Heenan and Keelan McGrath. Keelan went on last Saturday to lift an All-Ireland Fleadh title in Sligo.

There was a special welcome for Coolbawn native Molly, who performed four songs, including her Eurovision number Playing with Numbers. The talented singer / songwriter gave a preview of what will feature on her forthcoming EP, with Whiskey, Heart of the Silent Masquerade (which, she hinted, may feature in an upcoming movie), and Build Fireworks Again. Molly, who was joined by guitarist Greg French, with a special appearance by Naoimi Clarke, who played cello at Eurovision and was part of the backing group, thanked everybody for their support during Eurovision, which she described as “amazing”.

“It cool to be here,” she said of performing in Terryglass. “I love coming here.”

Festival chair Emma Pearse told the crowded marquee that each year the festival tried to “push the boat out”,