Library Ireland Week 2021: featured works from CMC's Archive - Anne-Marie O'Farrell's 'A Little Light Meitheal'

In today’s feature for Library Ireland Week 2021, in keeping with the theme of Our Future Story: Recharge, Reconnect & Re-emerge, the featured work from the CMC Archive is Anne-Marie O’Farrell's A Little Light Meitheal. 'Meitheal’ is an old Irish word that describes how neighbours would come together to solve problems as a collective. At the heart of the word is community unity through cooperative work.

Library Ireland Week is an annual initiative of the Library Association of Ireland. Each year Library Ireland Week (LIW) invites libraries across Ireland to host events, campaigns, activities or exhibitions to celebrate the annual theme.

Anne-Marie O'Farrell has composed for a variety of instrumental and vocal media, and her compositions are featured on the higher examination grades of conservatory syllabuses around the world. She lectures in composition at the DIT Conservatory of Music and Drama and for three years she was Composer in Residence at Mary Immaculate College, Limerick, funded by the Arts Council of Ireland.

Anne-Marie recently launched her new album, Embrace: New Directions for Irish Harp, at the Contemporary Music Centre -

A Little Light Meitheal premiered on 26 July 2019 at the Irish World Academy of Music and Dance in Limerick. It is a work is for traditional group and has five movements; I. Máirseáil Luimni, II. Port na gCailligh, III. Air for Margaret, IV. Waltz, V. Polka.

Each year Meitheal Residential Summer School commissions a piece for orchestra which is performed by the student body at the Finale concert. In 2019, the Meitheal Ennis Orchestra and Meitheal Limerick Orchestra each performed half of the A Little Light Meitheal suite:

As a tutor at the Meitheal Residential Summer School, Anne-Marie said:

I thoroughly enjoyed working with their large trad orchestras - it was so exciting for me to explore their timbral possibilities. They really excelled themselves in learning the music I'd composed for them, and gave brilliant performances of it.