Jingle Bells performed by Niamh McCormack and Claire Crehan
Festival In A Van, a new mobile outdoor venue bringing live performance to community and care settings visited Cavan Nursing Homes in December 2020. Supported by the Creative Ireland Programme, the Van offers local audiences and event organisers a flexible solution to the current restrictions of live performance in a Covid safe environment. It is a mini pop up venue with a professional technical team.
Festival In A Van visited Castlemanor, Esker Lodge and College View Nursing Homes in Cavan town, Oak View, Belturbet, St Joseph’s Nursing Home and Virginia Health Care Centre performing for the residents and staff in the grounds.
Two of Cavan’s finest performers Claire Crehan on piano and the soprano Niamh McCormack delighted with a selection of light opera, folk, Christmas hymns and classics. The tunes were joyful and uplifting despite the still, freezing air.
“It is wonderful for our residents to hear the music and see the performers this morning, it is a lift for us all. We have been singing along to all the tunes” said Mary Brady from Castlemanor Nursing Home.
Gráinne Boyle, from Cavan County Council’s social inclusion unit who scheduled the Nursing Home visits said “the music performed by Niamh and Claire is just the toe-tapping, heart-warming experience that we all need in these dark days of December”.
Cllr Sarah O’Reilly, Cathaoirleach of Cavan County Council was delighted to attend performances in Virginia. She said “Cavan County Council is pleased to offer this visit of the Van with Claire and Niamh performing for those living and working in the Nursing Homes. Covid 19 has challenged us all. Particularly the elderly and those working to care and support them. It is great to see Creative Ireland Cavan supported by social inclusion and the arts office making these concerts in the open air to take place. I am really looking forward to the time we can all go back to the theatres and live music venues for the magic it brings to our lives.”
And the final word to Esker Lodge’s Anita “how wonderful 'Festival in a Van' was, the residents had a fantastic time.”