Maeve Molloy.

VIDEO: Multi-talented Maeve has busy week ahead of her

Even without the fleadh taking place, Maeve Molloy from Bunbrosna has had an eventful summer. Not only did she sit her Leaving Cert in June; earlier this month, along with her twin Ciara, she was part of the Westmeath minor football squad who played in the Leinster Minor C final against Wicklow.

A talented midfielder with Clann Gaels, for the next few days at least, Maeve’s main focus will be on the fleadh and representing Ballynacargy CCÉ and her county in the U18 flute and in the U18 set dancing team competitions.

It’s been a busy few months, but that’s the way Maeve, who hopes to study PE and Geography teaching in UL in the autumn, likes things.

Although she just turned 18, she has been competing in All-Ireland Fleadhs since she was U12, in flute and set dancing.

Delighted that the fleadh is returning after the Covid related cancellations of the last two years, she says competing in her home county makes it special.

“It’s unreal. It’s kind of unusual that it is going to be here in my local town, where Comhaltas was founded. It’s historical in a way.

“Representing Ballynacargy Comhaltas and Mullingar, the town where it is going to be held, is a good feeling,” she says.

Maeve is looking forward to having a packed fleadh week. While she will be competing later in the week, she intends to take part in street sessions and will be performing on the Gig Rigs with her colleagues from Ballynacargy Comhaltas.

Maeve started playing music at the age of eight when she took up the tin whistle at Sonna NS. She then graduated to the flute when she was 10 and pre-Covid was a student of Siobhán Ní Chonaráin in Mullingar. She was also a student of Enda Seery for many years. In Ballynacargy CCÉ, Aine Reilly, Joe Connaire and Niamh Penrose have also been huge influences, she said.

Looking ahead to the fleadh, Maeve is also excited about attending the ceili band competition. “I am really looking forward to that because it is always a high standard,” she said.

A lover of traditional Irish music and culture, Maeve says that it is hard to beat a good music session. “There is such a good rhythm and swing to Irish music when it is played well. When there is a group of different instruments they blend really well too,” she said.