The 92nd Feis Maitiú Corcaigh festival got underway at Father Matthew Hall yesterday.
9,000 participants will take to the stage over the course of the seven-week festival in over 300 classes.
The festival is continuing to go from strength to strength with festival director Timothy McCarthy once again back the helm.
“The calibre of adjudicators at Feis Maitiú is testament to its reputation,” he said.
“We have three return adjudicators; Richard Deering, Marilynne Davis, and Catherine O'Brien, all of whom are very popular.
“We also have three new adjudicators; Priscilla Morris, Maeve O'Donoghue and Dr Colette Moloney”.
Among the highlights of this year's festival is the biennial Tilly Fleischmann memorial prize which is expected to attract a very high standard of skill in the advanced piano repertoire class. The bursary award associated with the class is sponsored in memory of Tilly Fleischmann by her great-granddaughter, Ruth Fleischmann.
One of the annual highlights at the festival is the adult choir section which is hosted in the Holy Trinity Church. Twenty choirs will take to the stage this year on February 4th.
Three new classes also feature on the programme this year. The most notable will be the Bryan O'Flynn Memorial Perpetual Cup for musical drama ensembles which has been added to the Feis agenda in memory of the late Cork musical theatre director who passed away in 2014.
The official accompanists Colin Nicholls, Tom Doyle and Michael Young are all returning this year. Conor Palliser of the CIT Cork School of Music has also been added to the accompanist line up which is fitting as he himself is a former Feis participant.
Elsewhere the Feis volunteers including Kathleen O'Regan, Breda Hayden, Harry Ormond and Ann Lonergan are also back behind the scenes this year. Their work has often been credited with helping to ensure the longevity of the festival.
Feis Maitiú runs until March 22nd.