Four times All-Ireland champions, the Senior Competitive Maghery Band embark on their East Coast USA Tour on Wednesday 13th March.
Following their international champion and All Ireland success, the Maghery Band have received numerous invites to perform globally.
The band who recently rebranded as Maghery Band Academy train youth and adults in traditional Irish music, classical and contemporary music, drumming and performance art in the form of drill, marching & Drum major roles.
The academy does so with the use of the Irish language and are passionate about representing their Irish heritage and culture, hence the extent of their Performance tour this March.
In January 2018 the band’s committee revealed their performance tour to members and since May 2018 have been avidly fundraising to assist subsidising the members to undertake the performance tour itself.
All members of the academy work voluntarily to train, organise and perform. Their registration fees and the likes assist in just some of the maintenance of the academy but do not cover all annual expenses which sees them perform locally, nationally and compete in All Ireland and International Competitions.
When receiving invitations from overseas the members are primarily faced with incurring these charges themselves and so the academy try their best to assist in subsidising these costs.
Primarily youth based, members in the academy range from national school, to second and third level students and this performance experience will be a cultural experience that will expand their performance horizons.
‘We are most thankful to all the locals, local businesses and local councillors etc who have supported us and our local fundraisers in the past 10months. The tour has cost approx €101,000 to undertake of which the members have paid 50%. The remaining 50% was raised through several channels. Like all community groups local fundraisers were organised showcasing events such as Variety Shows, Fashions Shows, Table Quizzes and the likes.
“A gofundme page was established for international supporters to contribute and business and personal donations were contributed also.’
Due to the lack of funding available for undertaking such performance tours and maintenance of their academy Band chairperson and Drill Instructor Annemarie O’Donnell, who as a professional is a Masters Graphic Designer developed a sponsorship package and book called ‘Band With Us’ which like their local fundraisers, which had entertainment and services provided to give back to the community, offers branding and advertising opportunities for businesses in return of their support.
‘We are delighted to be associated with McCafferty’s Bar & Bayview restaurant in Letterkenny, Donegal Town & Dungloe. Owner Declan Boyle has been supporting the band in the run up to our Tour and will continue this relationship post tour for to assist the academy’s development.’ McCaffertys Bar are based in Letterkenny & Donegal Town. Both are traditional bars and host live music and sports 7 nights a week. Bayview Restaurant is based in Dungloe.
Second sponsor and to the East Coast USA Tour is Clipfine Construction. Clipfine is owned by Ardara native Tommy McCarron who is currently working on the renovations of Big Ben in London. The benefit of supporting an education in the arts helps students to improve literacy, mathematics and cognitive development.
It also helps young people develop cultural literacy and personal skills, from collaboration through to perseverance, which are critical to the modern workplace. Your contribution to today’s band students ensures a stronger economy for the future.
There have been many more contributors and sponsors who although are not receiving branded recognition will be recognised in a book due for publication in late 2019/2020. The book which is in part published for their sponsorship proposal will be based on Annemarie’s ‘Band With Us’ proposal which documents the band’s history, dreams, successes and support received in the build up to this momentous year.
A special thanks has to be given to Leas-Cheann Comhairle & TD Pat the Cope Gallagher, his office and Current running councillor Noreen McGarvey. Both Pat & running councillor Noreen have been great advocates for the Band and see the potential that this tour has not only for it’s participants but for the community as a whole, our county and country who are being represented on the world stage.
The academy gives so much to the community in terms or training, development in individuals and in general a great education and work ethos. The commitment and dedication that our academy members have given consistently in the past 9years have been outstanding and is proof that hard work can be rewarded. The East Coast USA tour will introduce those values to the world stage.
It is an honour to be recognised worldwide and the professional performance tour will only further that reach and increase interest in the culturally curious target audience which is at its best very powerful in the USA. The band hope to receive groups and bands from their global visits in the near future, once more drawing people to their hometown and community.
Maghery Band have been most successful in bridging relationships and breaking moulds on international platforms. Their 3times Youth Band International Champion Status introduced them to competing on the international stage where they competed against as many as 18 other bands from across Europe & USA. Representing their county and country has been a great foundation as they engaged with performers on Irish Soil.
In November 2018 the Maghery Band competed in Northern Ireland obtaining their first win and entertainment recognition in Northern Ireland which found them scouted by Europe’s famous Tattoo show organisers. As a result the band were invited to headline at Liverpool Tattoo in September 2019. Another exciting venture for the professional performers!
Maghery Band’s East Coast USA Tour will commence on Wed 13th March visiting New York, New Jersey & Florida.
In New York the band will perform across three days on the iconic Times Square, on Liberty Island, at Ellis Island Memorial Wall & on 5th Avenue in NYC’s St.Patricks Day parade, to name but a few.
The band are honoured to be leading the NYC Donegal Association and will be parading from 11:35am on Sat 16th March with televised coverage by NBC.
The band will then be travelling to Bayonne, New Jersey where they will be parading in their St. Patrick’s Day Parade and performing in their post celebration party on Sun 17th March.
The band were honoured to be invited to Boston, Brooklyn & Newark parades but due to their busy performance schedule were unable to commit to these on this occasion!
Following their New Jersey visit the band will then be travelling to Orlando Florida where they will perform and parade in International Drive, Universal Studios & Magic Kingdom, Disney World.
“The performance schedule for the members will be intense as we intend to maximise our worldwide coverage and publicise our origins of Maghery, Dungloe, Co.Donegal and Ireland. Across the two weeks of performing the members have just 4days of free downtime to ensure they can maintain the busy schedule. This is very much a working tour. It’s intense schedule will pave way for members to enjoy the working schedule which will broaden individuals horizons. The opportunity professionally for the academy and personally for the individuals will be immense!
The organisation of the tour would not have been possible without the Band’s successful Committee. Chairperson, Drill & Drum Major Instructor & PRO: Annemarie O’Donnell, Co-Chair; Annette Boyle, Head Treasurer: Yvonne Houston, Co Treasurers: Karen Hunter & Hannah Glackin, Head Secretary & Drumming Instructor; Anthony Houston, Co Secretary and Music Instructor: Karl Doherty, General committee members; Martina Diver & Jamie Glackin & Gaeltacht & funding representative; Anthony O’Donnell.
Chairperson Annemarie commends the committee for their hard work over the past year with the organising, fundraising and implementation of the tour. They look forward now to seeing through their plans and hope that their travels will be safe and enjoyable.
Support continues to be invited for the Academy pre and post tour and anyone wishing to contribute can do so via gofundme for either the East Coast USA Tour or for the Academy there after.
You can check out their Facebook page @magheryband
The band will on Sun 10th March be attending Meenacross Mass so as to fulfil their annual tradition in advance of their tour departure.
At this 10:30am mass they will be blessed and will then parade Maghery Village at approx 11:45am, they will then travel to parade on Dungloe Main Street at approx 12:30pm before playing at Dungloe Community Hospital.
Their Junior and Senior ‘Old’ Band will fulfill their annual commitment on St Patricks Day as normal.Tags: