Songfest was a specially commissioned Peace III funded celebration of traditional song from Ireland, England, Scotland and Wales, in County Donegal and Derry City. It was organised by the Regional Cultural Centre Letterkenny and coordinated by the Earagail Arts Festival and held to coincide with Earagail’s 25th Anniversary and the Derry/Londonderry UK City of Culture.
Songfest culminated in a showcase festival comprising a free 3-day conference and lunchtime concerts at An Cultúrlann, Derry on July 18th and 19th and at the Regional Cultural Centre (RCC), Letterkenny on Saturday 20th July and a series of ticketed evening concerts in Letterkenny at the Regional Cultural Centre and An Grianán Theatre. It featured a brilliant line up of leading traditional singers from the four countries including Donegal’s Mairéad Ní Mhaonaigh of Altan, the legendary Martin Carthy and new rising stars Sam Lee and Jackie Oates from England, the wonderful Eddi Reader from Scotland and Julie Murphy an exceptional Welsh singer of Irish descent. There was also a global voices element to Songfest with concerts by Mor Kabasi the exquisite Moroccan Spanish singer and the electric African band Mokoomba. Songfest was funded through the EU Programme for Peace and Reconciliation managed for the SEUPB by Donegal County Council.