Glasgow schoolgirl wins prestigious singing title at the Royal National Mòd

A Glasgow schoolgirl has won a prestigious award at this year’s Royal National Mòd.

Maria Monk from Glasgow Gaelic School is winner of the Solo Singing Fluent - Girls ages 13-15 - Traditional Silver Pendant at The Royal National Mòd 2021, in Inverness,

What’s happening? S3 Glasgow Gaelic School pupil Maria Monk, who lives in Bearsden and whose family is from South Uist, won the Solo Singing Fluent Girls ages 13-15 Traditional Silver Pendant and the Ann Kelly MacDonald Memorial Trophy at The Royal National Mòd 2021.

She said: “It honestly feels amazing to have won as I’ve not been out competing at the Mòd for a long time because of Covid so it was a really nice experience. To win the competition is just incredible, I was not expecting it at all so I’m very pleased because I’ve been working hard for it. An old teacher of mine, Mrs Richardson, helped me prepare and I listened to recordings to learn the rhythm and pitch. My mum is fluent in Gaelic so she helped me with the Gaelic which was very nice.”

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Today, Tuesday 12 October, saw the junior competitions get underway, with youngsters performing a selection of Gaelic material set by an esteemed panel of judges.

James Graham, Chief Executive Officer of An Comunn Gàidhealach, said: “The children's competitions are a very important part of Mòd week. They showcase the young talent that is starting to break through, and give an encouraging insight into the health of the future of Gaelic culture and song. We also have a lively programme of fringe events for all the family and are greatly looking forward to welcoming Lauren MacColl to the Empire Theatre stage for the long-awaited debut of ‘East’.”

Chair of The Highland Council’s Gaelic Committee, Cllr Calum Munro added: “Good luck to all the young competitors in the junior competitions starting today. Participation in the local and national Mòds is an extremely valuable life skill which inspires confidence for our young people in public speaking and performing while continuing to foster cultural pride and growth in the Gaelic language.”

Shona MacLennan, Ceannard, Bòrd na Gàidhlig, said: “We are pleased to see the wide-range of events that the Mòd Inverness 2021 has arranged for children, which complement the competitions running on Tuesday. This aspect of the Royal National Mòd provides great fun and strengthens the children’s attachment to Gaelic, encouraging them to continue using it as they grow older. The events also contribute to the National Gaelic Language Plan aim that more people use Gaelic more often and in a wider range of situations.”

The Royal National Mòd will run until 16 October 2021. View the full programme and purchase tickets online here.