Launch of “Song of Kilteevan” a resounding success


On Saturday evening last, Kilteevan Community Centre was packed to capacity to celebrate the launch of a new CD entitled “Song of Kilteevan”

In welcoming the gathering Mr Michael Spellman, Chairperson of Kilteevan Community Development Group thanked everyone for attending with a special word of welcome and thanks extended to Ms Richenda Reid who acted as Irish Sign Language Interpreter for the event.

The title track on the CD was composed by Sr Kathleen Glennon (lyrics) and Ms. Miriam Hunt (music). Sr Kathleen spoke briefly about how the great work carried out by the local community in developing Kilteevan had inspired her to write the Song of Kilteevan. “The words came easy” she said, “the brown turf of the bog is in my soul”.

Mrs Phil Reilly, a long standing Kilteevan resident, formally launched the two track CD. Mrs Reilly said she was honoured to be invited to launch the CD and that she hoped everyone would enjoy it. She congratulated Kathleen and Miriam on their wonderful composition. She said the fact that her two granddaughters Enya and Shauna Reilly and her late husband Paddy were singing on the CD made it very special for her.

To a hushed audience, Enya Reilly performed “Song of Kilteevan” (Track 1 on the CD) accompanied on piano by Miriam Hunt. The audience rose to their feet in a standing ovation in appreciation.

Eileen Fahey, manager of the project, commenting on The Song of Kilteevan said aspects of Kilteevan’s heritage are now immortalised in this beautiful song. “Long after we are gone, our heritage will be commemorated in Song of Kilteevan”, she said. Eileen then introduced a video to accompany the new song which also received also a standing ovation.

A brief history of the traditionally held story in relation to James Hickey (composer of Track 2 on the CD) “The Groves of Kilteevan”, was provided by Eileen Fahey. Enya Reilly then introduced a recording of her late grandfather, Paddy Reilly, singing “The Groves of Kilteevan”. The recording was made by Mrs Gertie Brady, Clooncraff circa 2000 and was recently digitised for inclusion on the new CD. Paddy Reilly’s poignant, haunting and soulful rendition of The Groves brought tears to many eyes.

Presentations were made to Mrs Phil Reilly, Miriam Hunt, Kathleen Gleenon, Eileen Fahey and to Eamon Ó Dálaigh, Midland Sound Equipment, who generously donated many hours of his time, expertise and resources to this project.

The following singers and musicians who collaborated in the production were thanked; Shauna Reilly, Joe Healy, Adrian Harrington and Patrice Coyle. Charlotte Ó Dálaigh and Michael Barry who produced the beautiful video were also thanked.

The co-sponsors of the project, Reimas Developments and the Sisters of Mercy, Western Province, received words of gratitude.

Entertainment at the launch was provided by Michael Banahan, Tommy Murray, Pat Devaney and Tom Brady.

Messages of congratulations and good wishes were received from the Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment Denis Naughton TD, from the Minister for Children and Youth Affairs Catherine Zaponne from Dr Louise Gilligan, Professor Micheál O Súilleabháin, Fr Tommy Harlow and Outgoing Director of the CIA John Brennan; a man with renowned Kilteevan links.

“Song of Kilteevan”, the unique limited edition CD can be purchased at just €5 from Kilteevan Community Development Group.