Cape Breton’s Féis an Eilein Goes Virtual, Puts Concerts Online

Many of us are missing the opportunity to travel to Cape Breton this year, especially to Féis an Eilein, which is celebrating its 30th year despite the coróna-bhioras (COVID-19).

The weeklong event in August is a highlight of the Gaelic year in Nova Scotia. The féis, held on Eilean na Nollaig or Christmas Island, is the first to be held outside Scotland.

But don’t despair. Even if you can’t go to the féis this year, the féis can come to you.

Féis an Eilein has gone virtual, like many events, and its concerts are available on the organization’s website, and through its YouTube channel. They’ll bring Cape Breton into your own home.

First up, Aug. 18, was the Mòd nam Fìdhlearan, the Fiddler’s Court concert.

Second, on Aug. 19, Cèilidh nam Pìobairean, the famous Piper’s Cèilidh.

Keep an eye out for other programs from Féis an Eilein.

Spring Scottish Gaelic Classes Planned for New York

Screen Shot 2020-02-15 at 11.15.30 AMThe New York Caledonian Club, the heart of the Big Apple’s Gaelic Learning Community, is offering beginning and intermediate Scottish Gaelic classes this spring, and enrollment is open now.

The classes, which begin Feb. 25 and will run through May 5, will be held at the Ripley-Grier Studios in Midtown Manhattan, at 520 8th Avenue (between 36th and 37th Streets).

The beginner’s class (Scottish Gaelic 101) will be taught by John Grimaldi, and will use “Seallagain” — a free course by Catrìona NicIomhair Parsons available online — as its textbook. The intermediate class, Reading Scottish Gaelic, will be led by Don Ross, and will explore Gaelic literature. Both classes will be held on Tuesday evenings, starting at 6:30 p.m.

Tuition for both classes is $125 for NYCC members and $150 for the general public.