Some popular instruments in the Irish culture are flutes, harps, fiddles, tin whistles, and uilleann pipes. Many famous musicians and bands are Irish such as, U2, Thin Lizzy, The Script and Van Morrison. Along with the many different types of music Ireland has to offer, dancing often goes along with the music. There are several different forms of step dancing in Ireland (including sean-nos dancing and old style step dancing), but the style most familiar to the public is a southern form called Munster, which was formalised by the Irish Dancing Committee.
Most Irish step dancing is mostly done in competitions or done through public performances. Irish solo step dances fall into two categories depending on the shoes worn. There are two types of shoes, hard shoes and soft shoes. Soft shoe dances include the reel, slip jig, light jig and single jig . The soft shoes are known as ghillies. Hard shoes are used for dancing more heavy dances such as the horn pipe. The hard shoe is bulky and has tips and heels made of fiberglass. An organized step dance competition is referred to as a feis (pronounced fesh). The word feis means "festival" in Irish.
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Dance competitions are divided by age and level of experience. The Irish celebrate some of the same holidays as the U. S. However, they also celebrate many other holidays. The national holiday of Ireland is St. Patrick’s Day. St. Patrick’s Day is celebrated in both Ireland and the U. S. In Irish culture, it is celebrated in a more religious way rather than a party way. Ireland celebrates the teachings of Christianity by Saint Patrick. Typical celebrations include wearing green shamrocks while in church to honor the teaching of the Holy Trinity by Saint Patrick himself. After church typical families head home to a large roast.
Some families sit around and watch the St Patrick’s Day parades take place in Dublin, New York, Chicago and other major cities. The St. Patrick’s Festival takes place over a course of five days, with events such as art shows, plays, concerts, fun fairs, and the main parade. In the U. S and Canada, it is celebrated in more of a party aspect rather than a religious aspect. In the U. S many bars will serve green beer and many people will hold St. Patrick’s Day parties. The Irish also celebrate many other religious holidays.
One of the other major holidays celebrated in Ireland is St. Stephen’s Day. St. St. Stephen’s Day is celebrated the day after Christmas on December 26th. St. Stephen’s Day (La an Dreoilin) celebrates the feast of St. Stephen. St. Stephen’s Day is a popular holiday to visit family and do activities with the family. The Irish also celebrate many American holidays on the same dates as the U. S. The Irish celebrate Christmas, New Year’s Day, Labor Day, and Easter on the same dates as the U. S. The Irish also have many festivities such as the Pan Celtic Festival in April, the Fleadh Nua in May, Lisdoonvarna Matchmaking Festival in August, and Puck fair also in May.
The Pan Celtic Festival began in Killarney in 1971 when it purposed to create better relations between the Celtic nations of Ireland, Scotland, Brittany, the Isle of Mann, Cornwall and Wales. Today it has grown to a complete celebration of Celtic culture with parades, music, dancing and sports. The Fleadh Nua Festival brings together concerts, ceilithe, music, song and dancing workshops, and each year thousands of people in search of traditional entertainment attend. The Lisdoonvarna Matchmaking Festival is Ireland's biggest singles event.
The Lisdoonvarna Matchmaking Festival is Ireland's biggest singles event. A mix of music, dance, horseracing and BBQ championships. The Puck Fair is one of Ireland's oldest and most popular festivals, with hours of free family entertainment, a traditional horse fair, open air concerts, parades and fireworks. Irish food is a style of cooking originating from Ireland or developed by Irish people. The introduction of the potato was first introduced in the late 16th century, and it changed Irish food from there on. Irish beef is exported all over the world and is known for its quality.
Traditional Irish foods include Irish stew, Irish Soda Bread, Bacon and Cabbage, Boxty, and Colcannon. In the 21st century, the usual selection of foods popular in Western culture has been introduced in Ireland. Europe's dishes have influenced the country. Modern cuisine is based off of fresh vegetables, salmon, trout, oysters, mussels, traditional soda bread, cheeses, and the infamous potato. Fish and Chips are an extremely popular item at fast food drive- troughs. The growth of fast food places, has led to high obesity rates. Ireland now has one of the highest heart disease rates in the world.
Folklores and stories have been passed down from generation to generation for many years. A common place for folklores and stories to be passed down is sitting around the fire. There are many different stories to be told. Each family or group has different versions of the same story . Young people typically get told stories passed down to them from older people. Most folklore and stories have been being passed down since Celtic mythology was developed. Celtic mythology tells folklores and stories from the medieval time period in Ireland.
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