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February 27, 2007

An Tostal Celebrations in 1954

An article from the Leinster Leader of May 1954 on the An Tostal celebrations in the town for that year.
Leinster Leader 8/5/1954
            A well balance and varied programme of An Tostál fare proved most attractive in Kildare Town, and since Easter Sunday considerable interest centred on the various functions, features and fixtures.
            The programme opened auspiciously with the highly successful historical pageant, briefly referred to in a recent issue. Presented in the C.Y.M.S. Hall on Easter Monday and Tuesday by the boys and girls of Kildare, excited considerable comment and was highly praised by all who saw it.
            Outstanding features were the magnificent choral and solo singing, the accompaniment and incidental music, the well-timed entrances, the colourful costumes and the artistic stage settings and lighting.
            The boys of the De La Salle Schools and the girls of the Presentation Convent entered into the spirit of the pageant with understanding and enthusiasm and succeeded in infusing a spirit of realism into the whole presentation. Almost 100 in all were engaged and they deserve every credit and commendation for their efforts.
            Army Sergeant Barney McCourt was the moving spirit behind the appealing stage settings, and in his efforts he was expertly assisted by electrician Mr. Wm. Reilly.
            The choir was prepared by Rev. Mother Laserian; tableaux a wrranged by Rev. Bro. Cataldus, and accompanist was Miss M. McEnerney. Script was by Rev. E. McGrath O.Carm, Prior, Kildare; Rev. Bro. Cataldus, Commdt. W. Rea and Mr. B. Treacy.
            A special word of appreciation is due to the parents of the children taking part.
            Other feature’s of Kildare’s programme were the I.C.A. exhibition of work in the National Schools on Sunday week (public patronage of this exhibition was not up to expectations, despite the fact that the display was both interesting and informative); the fancy dress competition on the same night; an open-air basketball exhibition game (Army players v. C.Y.M.S. representatives) in the Market Square and a juvenile exhibition (concluding on Friday, April 30th) in the Courthouse.
            There were numerous visitors to the town during the period, and there was an exceptionally large number of visitors to the nearby Japanese Gardens at Tully.
            Under the auspices of the Kildare An Tostál Committee, a lecture was given by an tAthair Seosamh O’Murthuíle, S.J., on the Kildare men’s part in the Rising of 1798.
            After the lecture there was a presentation on behalf of the 1798 National Commemoration Committee of a certificate of honour to Mr. Daniel Rourke, of Rathcoole, the direct descendant of Felix Rourke, the incorruptible 1798 leader, he was hanged after the Emmet Rising of 1803 on refusing to give any information which might implicate his comrades.
            At the lecture was displayed a pair of dancing shoes belonging to Lady Pamela, the wife of Lord Edward Fitzgerald, which had been preserved in the family of the Misses Cahill, Kildare, for over a century and a half; a cup belonging to Edward Fox Fitzgerald, the son of Lord Edward, was also shown.
            The lecturer recommended the founding at Kildare of a regional museum of the history of 1798 as a means of honouring the fine part played by the Kildaremen in that period of our history.

An article from the Leinster Leader of May 1954 on the An Tostal celebrations in the town for that year. 


Posted by mariocorrigan at February 27, 2007 11:46 AM