Cultural centers

A new series filmed in the city’s cultural space launches on TG4 Player this month – Connacht Tribune – Galway City Tribune:

A curated showcase of emerging and established artists – Irish and international – all filmed in a Galway location known for supporting rising stars, will be available on the TG4 Player this month.

CUMASC: Seisiúin sa Black Gate is a new twelve-part musical series that blends beautiful concert film with intimate observational documentary and interviews.

It features concerts recorded live at the Black Gate cultural center in the heart of Galway, as well as behind-the-scenes footage and interviews filmed at a variety of striking locations in the city and surrounding countryside.

The series was commissioned for TG4 as part of BAI’s separate Live Music Sector funding stream. This initiative was created to support the live music sector which has suffered from the Covid-19 pandemic.

The series opens with Grammy-winning American musician, Rhiannon Giddens, Italian composer, Francesco Turrisi, and Connemara-born sean-nós singer, Róisín Elsafty.

These three wonderful artists present a beautifully inventive collaboration that draws from three distinct folk traditions and merges them seamlessly. It’s a wonderful moment in a series full of them.

Electronic musician Daithí Ó Drónaí and singer, songwriter and violinist Suzanne Savage lose themselves in improvisation and write an electrifying new song about a thunderbolt on Suzanne’s train that morning.

American singer-songwriter Sam Amidon sits in a boat on the River Corrib, the warmth of his playing and song piercing the lingering grays of the Galway morning sky.

Singer-songwriter John Conneely and soul performer Síomha breathe new life and beautiful harmonies into old classics and old castles.

Revered stalwarts Liam Ó Maonlaí, Niwel Tsumbu and Eamonn Cagney talk about musical possibilities as endless as the stars in the sky before launching into an impromptu, celebratory jam.

And that’s just a sampling of the talent showcased throughout the series.

Rachael Lavelle, Peter Broderick, Seamus Begley, Junior Brother, Seamie O’Dowd, Daoirí Farrell, Anna Mullarkey, David Kitt, Colm Mac Con Iomaire, Arborist, John Blek, Inni-K, Jinx Lennon and The Mary Wallopers also lend their d immense musical talents.

The Black Gate Cultural Center was co-founded by Peadar King and Eamonn Day in 2017, as an arts space – with the needs of these artists at its heart.

The Black Gate has evolved into more than a cultural center; it is a renowned concert hall, a state-of-the-art recording studio, a publishing house and the headquarters of the Black Gate Label and Black Gate Productions.

Now, this final chapter, CUMASC: Seisiúin sa Black Gate, is set to launch as the first digital series on the TG4 Player. It will be broadcast later on TG4.

Mairéad Ní Thréinir, Producer at Black Gate Productions, said she was proud to complete her first-ever TV order.

“We’re proud that this comes naturally from our venue’s unique relationship with musicians and artists from across Ireland and overseas,” she said.

“We are particularly proud to show our deep respect for our mother tongue. CUMASC was commissioned for TG4 as part of a special round of BAI, the live music industry’s funding stream. This initiative was created to support a sector that was suffering – and is still suffering – from the constraints of the pandemic.

“Producing this series not only created opportunities for the musicians and the production crew, but also allowed us to retrain the live performance crew into television production,” she added.