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GCL Student Scoops National Scléip Award

GCL Student Scoops National Scléip Award
Date: 27 Mar 2012

Second Year Gaelcholáiste Luimnigh student, Sinéad Toomey, scooped the top award at the All-Ireland Final of Scléip at the weekend. The fourteen year old singer/songwriter was awarded first prize in the Junior category of Solo Modern Music and also succeeded in winning the "Grand Prix" award of Best Overall Act, beating off strong competition in all Junior and Senior categories.

Sinéad has been playing the guitar and piano for five years and began writing her own songs during her first year in secondary school. Her previous songs were all written in the English language and this was her first venture into song writing ‘trí Ghaeilge’. Her song, "D'athraigh Mé", is about friendship and how those who love you will always be there for you.  According to Sinéad: “The song describes how things in life can change to make you a stronger person”.  She described how delighted she was with the win and said that she is “taking it all in her stride at the moment”.

Approximately 600 second level students took part in four regional finals in February and fifteen schools were represented at the final, which took place in the Axis Theatre in Dublin last Saturday. The prestigious competition for Irish medium second level schools was adjudicated by a panel of three highly respected artist: Sinéad Ní Uallacháin, Tomaí Ó Conghaile and Jen Ní Mhathúna. The competition was documented and recorded by Raidió na Gaeltachta and a series of programmes will be broadcast in April on RnaG.

Sinéad is delighted with her achievement and commended those at Gaelscoileanna Teo for organising the competition. “I think this competition is a great chance for students from All-Irish backgrounds to bring back an Irish culture in a more modern, popular way”, she said. Sinéad’s music teacher, Ms. Naomi Morrissey, praised her for her excellent achievement and stated that: “Sinéad is a highly talented and gifted musician and songwriter and we are all thrilled in Gaelcholáiste Luimnigh that her talent has been recognised at a national level”.

GCL Principal, Donncha Ó Treasaigh, also praised Sinéad and thanked Ms. Morrissey for encouraging Sinéad to enter this competition and for her help in guiding Sinéad through the process.  “I am also very grateful to all teachers in the College who are involved in motivating and inspiring our students in the important area of arts and our students are very fortunate to have such dedicated staff like Ms. Naomi Morrissey and Ms. Fionnuala Quigley”, he said.  Mr. Ó Treasaigh also explained that this is the second time that this award has been won by a Limerick school: “In 2008, Laurel Hill Coláiste won the award with an excellent traditional music performance, and we are delighted at Gaelcholáiste Luimnigh that we have ensured that Limerick is where the trophy will stay for another year”.

Sinéad is pictured above right receiving the beautiful award in Dublin last Saturday.