Ár nAmhrán/Our Anthem EU50
Press release10 March 2023
As part of the EU50 programme celebrating Ireland’s membership of the European Union over the last 50 years, a partnership between the Department of Foreign Affairs, the Department of Education and the Royal Irish Academy of Music invites schools at all levels, and all children and young people engaging in music performance education, to learn, rehearse and perform our EU Anthem, Beethoven’s Ode to Joy. Ár nAmhrán/Our AnthemEU50 will culminate in live performances of the Anthem in schools on the eve of and on Europe Day, 8-9 May 2023.
A project pack of sheet music, recordings and other supporting materials are freely available to download from the dedicated Ár nAmhrán/Our Anthem page on Royal Irish Academy website, where schools can register their interest in participating. A flag will be distributed to each participating school and schools are encouraged to raise or display the EU flag when the anthem is performed. Registration and access to the musical pack of sheet music and recordings is available at www.RIAM.ie/Ár nAmhrán/Our Anthem EU50.
Speaking today, Tánaiste, Minister for Foreign Affairs and Minister for Defence, Micheál Martin TD said:
“I am pleased to launch this creative collaboration in this anniversary year of our membership of the EU. This is an opportunity to celebrate the profound and positive influence our EU membership has on our lives. This includes the richness of cultures that exist in Irish schools and society today. I hope schools are inspired to take part in marking this milestone and students take active ownership of ‘Ode to Joy’ as their European anthem”
Minister for Education Norma Foley TD said:
“This project gives students the opportunity to bring their language skills, creativity, musicianship and active citizenship together, as they interpret the music and words of Ode to Joy and consider the opportunities that the EU has brought to Irish society, including to education. I look forward to hearing the inspiring strains of this anthem brought to life in our schools and communities, in English, French, German and Ukrainian, and through a wide range of styles and musical performances.”
Notes for Editors
- Ár nAmhrán/Our Anthem EU50 is part of the Government of Ireland EU50 programme celebrating Ireland’s membership of the European Union.
- It is a partnership between the Department of Foreign Affairs, the Department of Education and the Royal Irish Academy of Music.
- The Royal Irish Academy of Music was commissioned to develop an accessible and inclusive menu of options to learn and perform the anthem, including a variety of musical arrangements (e.g. keyboard, guitar, recorder, bands, traditional groups, vocal, choral and orchestral).
- Versions for singing in Irish, English and Ukrainian as well as the original German are also available.
- The project will culminate in live performances of the anthem in schools or local music performance education settings around Europe Day, 8-9 May 2023, which provides an opportunity to engage with all citizens of Ireland in the EU in this 50th anniversary year.
- Schools are also invited to publish their performances from 1 May on social media under #OurAnthemEU50, as appropriate.
- Ár nAmhrán/Our Anthem EU50 is an opportunity to re-emphasise the role the EU plays in the lives of European citizens and the cultural and linguistic diversity of Europe.