The American president does it, the British Queen does it, the lifetime achievement award winner at IFTA 2012 actress Fionnuala Flanagan does it and during Seachtain na Gaeilge, so can you.
Seachtain na Gaeilge, which starts on Monday and runs up to and including St Patrick’s Day, provides the ideal opportunity to get over your inhibitions and use Gaeilge, whether in full or partial conversation or just with a couple of words.
There will be Seachtain na Gaeilge events on the continent as well as in the USA, Canada, and Australia, while Galway city and county will boasts the largest programme of events in Ireland and they are aimed at everyone - from those with little or no Irish to those who are fluent.
There will be a variety of concerts, including a show dedicated to Irish and Scottish song from Maeve Cairney, Martina King, and Eugene Lamb; Scots Gaelic anarchistic punk rock with Oi Polloi; and the humorously monikered Pervish, who are a group of musicians based in the University of Limerick music school who perform bawdy Irish and Scottish ballads.
There will also be concerts with Marcus Ó hIarnáin and Don Stiffe; traditional music sessions with Maureen and Breandan Browne and Johnny ‘Ringo’ Mc Donagh; sean-nós dancing workshops with Padraig O hOibicín; and sean-nós singing sessions with singers such as Roisín Elsafty, Joe John Mac an Iomaire, and Caitríona Ní Cheannabháin.
Seachtain na Gaeilge’s theatre programme includes the production by Moonfish Theatre Company of Tromluí Phinocchio (Pinocchio - A Nightmare ) [see interview in The Week section of today’s paper]. Fíbín drama company will also be on stage with their production Finscéal Fíbín while Branar Drámaíochta will tour with their new production Spraoi.
Schools in the city and county will be organising events while Galway’s connection with Brittany will be celebrated with the group BreizhEire, who are organising an evening of Breton music and dance in Club Áras na nGael.
A series of coffee mornings under the Is leor Beirt heading will provide further opportunities in this year’s Seachtain na Gaeilge. Junior Chamber of Ireland Galway ia organising a Strictly Ceilí event in Club Árus na nGael on Thursday March 15 at 8.30pm and there will be dancing lessons provided for the first hour.