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Music exhibition opens at County Museum, Dundalk

New exhibition opens at the County Museum
An exhibition on the life and music of former organist at St. Patrick's Cathedral, Michael Van Dessel has just opened at the County Museum, Dundalk.  Michael Van Dessel Dundalk’s Hidden Musical Genius celebrates the contribution that Michael made to music (both Church and secular) not only in Dundalk but the country as well, charting his arrival here from Belgium in the early 1920s to the time of his death in 1974.  According to Brian Walsh, Curator “In putting this exhibition together the recurring feature that I came across was the obvious affection and warmth that people had for Mr. Van Dessel.  The fondness and respect that people had for him was just so apparent.  The way that people spoke of him there in the way that people speak of the man; it is so clear, it is almost hushed, reverential tones.  He was obviously a man who commanded great loyalty and inspired a great many  people even to this day.  ”
The exhibition features two listening posts where visitors can sample both Van Dessel playing the organ as well as the Mass he wrote to mark the canonisation of Oliver Plunkett.  “The inclusion of the listening posts adds a new dimension to the exhibition – allowing the visitor to immerse him or herself in the performance.  Hopefully enhancing the experience of the exhibition” said Mr Walsh.  The exhibition will be opened by Georges Minne, former organist at Armagh Cathedral and a compatriot and colleague of Michael’s.  Admission to the exhibition is free, it will run to September of this year.
The Museum has also confirmed that it will be running guided walking tours of Dundalk over the summer.  Commencing from Tuesday 28th June next the free tours cover much of the town’s medieval history taking in sites such as St. Nicholas’s Church, St. Leonard’s Gardens and St. Patrick’s Cathedral.  Tours are weather permitting and prior booking is essential.  More information may be had by contacting the Museum at 042 9392999.