by STACEY HEANEY
A LOCAL boy is celebrating his achievements at a traditional
music cornpetion, where he won four gold medals and a silver.
12 - year-old Liam McCullagh, from Lambeg,
was victorious at the provincial level traditional music
competition, the Ulster Fleadh Cheoil, which was held in
Castlewellan on July 26 and 27.
Liam, who attended St. Colman's Primary and
will be joining Rathmore Grammar in September, took the gold in
the U12 uilleann pipes, U12 uilleann pipes slow air, U12 trio
along with Caoimhe Flanagan on tin whistle and Bronagh Muldoon
on fiddle) and U12 group, as part of the Loch Lao traditional
group). He was also awarded silver in the U12 duet competition
along with Caoimhe Flanagan on tin whistle.
Liam will now go on to represent Ulster in
the All-Ireland Fleadh Cheoil in Tullamore, Co. Offaly on August
23 and 24, where he will compete in five separate competitions
as an individual, duet, trio and group member.
Liam has been playing the uileann pipes for
two years with his tutor is Patrick Davey in Belfast. The pipes
are Ireland's most distinctive traditional instrument and are
recognised in piping circles as the most advanced form of
bagpipe in the world.
Liam comes from a musical family, with his
older sister Catherine (15) previously competing at the All
Ireland Fleadh on the concert flute while his younger sister
Rose (7) plays fiddle and tin whistle. Rose won best overall
musician at the Glens Feis in Dunloy this year in her age group.
All three are members of The Loch Lao
Traditional Music Society. All members of the group regularly
participate in a range of other events including concerts,
visits to care homes and schools and other performances.