Members of Longford’s Mide Samba band with their new samba equipment.
Santa doesn’t only come to children it seems. County Longford’s Mide Samba Band got a very big present this Christmas when their very own drumming equipment arrived all the way from Brazil.
Over 50 drums, beaters, bells and percussion items arrived on December 23. The equipment, which cost over €6,000 was the result of a successful Irish Music Network grant kindly supported by Fergus Kennedy and Longford County Arts Office.
The new group comprising of local volunteers from all over the county has gone from strength to strength since it started last January, picking up first place in Granard, Ballymahon and Longford parade festivals.
“It’s a great boost for the group,” said Mide stalwart John Carroll from Ballymahon.
“Last year, we had to borrow drums for the St Patrick's Day parades. It will allow us to involve more people now.”
For those who are not familiar with Samba, it refers to the carnival music associated closely with Rio Brazil and involves percussion instruments and lively street dancing.
“Samba drumming encourages social development, self-expression and confidence,” says Mide Samba tutor Tom Duffy.
“It's accessible to all abilities, even absolute beginners to music. We all have rhythm inside of us, we aim to bring it out in a fun, inclusive way.
“All you need is a heartbeat and willingness to give it a go!”
Mide Street Theatre Group is a Longford county-wide art initiative to support local communities to develop artistic skills and knowledge to make public art and street theatre spectacles. Mide has been kindly supported by Longford County Arts Office.
Mide’s plan is that the Samba band will participate in the celebration of public cultural events around the county and will become a social space for people with an interest in participating in drumming and music activities. No previous experience necessary.
Mide are inviting anyone with an interest in drumming to come along to our opening session next Thursday, January 17 at 7.30pm in the Attic House, Ballinalee Road, Longford.
For further information please check out our Mide facebook page or contact firstname.lastname@example.org.