Killarney Musician Cian Takes the Mike Kenny Memorial Cup

A very fitting, fourth anniversary, tribute night to the late Mike Kenny was held at Browne’s Bar on Castleisland’s Main Street on Wednesday night. Centre to the evening was the presentation of the Mike Kenny Memorial Perpetual Cup to Cian O’Sullivan of Fossa, Killarney.

The cup was sponsored by Ted Kenny – a cousin of the man whose memory it honours – and Cian O’Sullivan is the third recipient. Its purpose is to honour an up and coming, young musician each year at this time.

All-Ireland Champion Piper and Mouth-Organ player, Micheál Ó Sé was the first and, in 2014 TG4 Young Musician of the Year, Bryan O’Leary received the award.

Cian O’Sullivan is a pupil of Killarney School of Music and has been tutored previously by Pauline Mahon and Nicky McAuliffe.

Acknowledged and Thanked

In accepting the award, Cian O’Sullivan acknowledged and thanked all the people, from his parents and family outwards, who helped him in his career to date.

The cup was presented jointly by Ted Kenny and the late Mr. Kenny’s sister, Eileen Brick. The event was attended by members of the Brick family and Mike’s partner, Mags and a circle of friends.

A ‘plaster’ bust of the Seán Ó Riada sculpture was presented to Browne’s Bar and will be on permanent display there. The bust was part of the original sculpture which was cast in the Kilbaha, Co. Clare foundry of Séamus and Jim Connelly and they kindly made the ‘plaster’ available on request. It was transported to Castleisland by Theresa Cahill – who was in Browne’s for the presentation. The evening was a celebration of the skills of the sculptor from Castleisland and of an up and coming, young musician from Killarney.

Killarney School of Music

Cian O’Sullivan is a pupil of the Killarney School of Music, where, as founder member Pádraig Buckley explained: “Two thirds of everything we do at the school is Trad based and whenever any of our pupils receive any awards of any description we are always very glad for them.”

“The Mike Kenny Young Musician Award is brilliant as it gives recognition to local talented musicians whilst remembering Mike – who was a great music lover and a very talented artist.

“This year Cian O’Sullivan got the shout and he is indeed a very worthy recipient. He has been playing fiddle from a very young age under the tuition of Pauline Mahon and Nicky McAuliffe and he is a credit to them both. Cian embraces all styles of fiddle playing and is as comfortable playing highlands and flings as he is playing polkas and slides.

Great Initiative

“He is always learning new material and has a great attitude to learning and to involving music in his everyday life. This is a great initiative by the Kenny family and there’s also great credit due to Peter Browne for his handling of the presentation night.

“It’s all done in a very warm and friendly gathering of musicians, music lovers and friends and family of the late Mike Kenny. At the Killarney School of Music we are very proud of Cian and Micheál Ó Sé. We know that having our pupils winning this award creates a great example for every pupil in the school,” Mr. Buckley concluded.