This presentation, which will feature performances and interviews with harpist, Eilís Lavelle and singer Catriona Gribben will consider the different contributions of Edward Bunting and Thomas Moore to Ireland’s cultural heritage. From 1792 until his death in 1843, Bunting was what we would now think of as a folklorist who personally collected or commissioned the collection of tunes and lyrics from amateur musicians in certain counties of Ireland. He preserved this work in an extensive manuscript collection and offered arrangements of a selection of these tunes and songs in three published collections (1796, 1809, 1840). Thomas Moore was a very different kind of collector. His aim was to serve a commercial publishing project by gathering tunes that would serve as inspiration for his original lyrics. His project resulted in a ten-number publications series, the famous Irish Melodies (1808-1834). He sourced tunes from several collections of traditional Irish airs including Edward Bunting’s 1796 and 1809 collections, creating a complex relationship between the two collectors that warrants comment. The reception of Moore’s Irish Melodies, its sustained circulation and the various settings and arrangements it inspired brought the music of Ireland to a global audience.
This presentation will include performances of familiar and unfamiliar versions of favourite airs such as The Pretty Girl Milking her Cow, Nelly an Chúil Chraobhaigh/ Eleanor Plunkett, and The Girl I left behind Me.