Newly composed poems and songs from the pen of Aran Island writer Dara Ó Conaola, is now available on a new CD. Ó Conaola is the author of several books, which includes short stories, plays, stories for children and biographies. The new CD
coincides with the publication of his new bilingual book of poetry ‘Ag Caint le Synge/Talking to Synge’ and contains new poems and songs from the book.
Published by Oilean Press, the book is beautifully illustrated with photographs and features exquisite drawings by Snail Lemley of the faces and places that inspire these delightful poems and songs. The title poem ‘Ag Caint le Synge/Talking to Synge’ refers to the famous playwright, JMSynge, whose literary work is synonymous with the Aran Islands.
The CD consists of readings and singing, suitably complementing the poems with some exceptional performances by the author’s family. Lasairfhíona Ní Chonaola the well-known sean-nós and contemporary singer is at her very best here as a singer, reader and producer. Similiarly, her brother MacDara Ó Conaola also well-known as a singer and reader excels himself with his very creative musical treatment of a poem. The author contributes as a reader with his usual ease and fluency, and son Diarmaid is the perfect reader of an enigmatic short but uplifting poem.
Fionnán, the youngest of the clan, demonstrates his versatility as a performer on this new album. As well as taking on the role of J.M.Synge and interpreting the music of Johan Sebastian Bach, as a singer he also joins Lasairfhíona with one of Ireland’s most distinguished guitarists, Garry Ó Briain to give an extraordinary rendition of ‘An Gaiscíoch Cróga’, a new song set to music by Lasairfhíona.
The idea for the new CD came from Pacella Uí Chonaola, whose expressed objective is to showcase the artistic work of the family on the one stage. As executive producer she organized every step of the project with her usual artistic flair.