Featuring some of the best contemporary pipers and musicians working in Irish Traditional music today the Festival is a welcome sign of our return to collective community fun and tuneful frolics.
Named in honour of the man, the music and the legend of one Dinny Delaney (1836-1919) - and dedicated to the Genius and Tradition of Irish Uilleann Pipers everywhere the staging of the festival on the May Bank Holiday weekend will be appreciated by music lovers.
Born in 1836, just outside Ballinasloe, in the townland of Tulrush, Dinny Delaney and his sister were orphaned as children and then, at the age of 13, Dinny caught Small Pox - the often tragic condition and once life-threatening infection – that in this case leaves a young man all but blind. And Dinny and his pipes played everywhere - at weddings, funerals, corner dances, recitals, competitions and return visits to major concert halls in Dublin, Edinburgh and London. Such was Dinny’s fame and impact that upon his passing an obituary was published in a newspaper in Sydney Australia.
Building on the successful format of the original 2019 festival it will feature concerts, sessions and masterclass workshops, not just in Uilleann Pipes but in other traditional instruments ranging from fiddle to bodhran to concertina, accordian and harp.
The concerts begin on Friday 29 April with a show from the powerhouse ‘Blackie O’Connell Band’ performing in the intimate venue of the newly refurbished downstairs at ‘Brewery Lane’. Gifted with a fast-flowing exuberant style Blackie tours regularly in Europe, the USA and Asia and his performances were recently described in The Guardian by actor Fiona Shaw as “the most exciting live music in the world!”
Saturday’s concert venue is the venerable Town Hall Theatre which hosts the fearless, indominable talents of Paddy Keenan, a piper who in the 1970’s possibly did more than any other to save the Pipes from obscurity and who is described as the Jimi Hendrix of Uilleann Piping. For this concert Paddy is once again joined by Tríona Ní Domhnaill, his old bandmate from the Bothy Band days as well as Tríona’s sister Máiréad and some special surprise guests.
The Festival’s concert programme concludes in the Town Hall on the Sunday evening with a performance from Ireland’s piper du jour Louise Mulcahy. Having recently explored the hidden history of Ireland’s women pipers in a feature length TG4 documentary ‘Mná na bPíob’ Louise is a regular guest on RTÉ’s The Late Late show and her success hearlds a new wave of confident, successful pipers, who also happen to be women. For the Dinny Delaney Festival Louise will be joined in concert by her father Mick and her sister Michelle.
All three concert headliners will also be providing workshops in the art of Uilleann Piping (details from www.dinnydelaney.com)
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