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Ed Reavy Festival Identity and Exhibition Design
Cavan Town CCÉ hosted the inaugural festival to celebrate the music of Ed Reavy at a number of venues in Cavan Town and Ed’s native Maudabawn from October 15th to 18th 2015. Born in Barnagrove Cootehill, Co. Cavan in 1898, Ed emigrated to Philadelphia in 1912 where he lived till his passing in 1988. An outstanding fiddler and composer of traditional dance tunes, he recorded for the Victor record label in 1927.
It is estimated that he wrote between 400 and 500 tunes, of which 127 have been preserved in notational form. Dr. Mick Moloney, folklorist, musicologist, arts presenter and advocate, professor of music and Irish studies, recipient of the National Heritage Award from the NEA in the US, recipient of the Presidential Distinguished Service Award from President Michael D Higgins has said of Ed Reavy in his introduction to The Collected Compositions of Ed Reavy: “No composer of traditional dance tunes in the history of Irish music has ever had his music adopted and played as widely as Ed.
He devoted much of his life to the creation of a vast body of compelling, finely crafted tunes leaving an indelible imprint on the beautiful old tradition that was his first love”. His compositions include such favourites as “In Memory of Coleman”, named for the inspirational Sligo fiddler, “The Hunters House”, “Maudabawn Chapel” named after the church where Ed spent his childhood in Cavan and chosen by Bronx born fiddle player Eileen Ivers as one of her tunes when she successfully won the All Ireland Senior Fiddle Championship in 1984, “The Lone Bush”, a hornpipe written about a remarkably resilient shrub which stood outside his childhood home—this composition was chosen by Chicago born All Ireland Senior Fiddle titlist, Liz Carroll, when she won the Junior Championship in 1974.
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