This is a wonderfulÂ re-creation of a traditional Irish custom for convening for an intimate, joyous gathering. Dónall Ó Héalaí, will come to facilitate sharing of Irish songs, stories, and poetry in an enjoyable and meaningful way with you. Â This ancient tradition,Â that survived into the last century, especially in the West of Ireland, was the custom of holding nightly gatherings in a neighbor’s home, known asÂ Oíche Airneáin, (a night of songÂ and stories). They were held during the cold, dark winter months. At night-time,Â neighbors came together to enjoyÂ well-loved stories and songsÂ in the glow of a turf fire burning in the hearth.Â This was a hugelyÂ helpful custom for people to escape the harsh winter environment, allowing a rareÂ opportunity for reflection, celebration, and temporary social refuge from the difficult conditions of winter life.
Born and raised in Connemara in the West of Ireland, Dónall is the founding director of Celtic Consciousness. A lover and sharer of stories and songs, he is a native Gaelic speaker and a graduate of the National University of Ireland, Maynooth, where he was awarded Dr. H.H Stewart Literary prize. He has worked extensively with the National Irish-language television channel, TG4, as well as with the National Irish-language theatre, An Taibhdhearc. He has also taught at The Irish Arts Center in New York City. In 2015 he was presented with Irish Screen America’s rising Talent Award for his in performance in film. His acting work on film and television has featured in the Toronto Film Festival and at the Prix Europa television awards.