Trad Week 2020 presents quintessential Irish sounds

Wednesday January 8, 2020
The Straddy Session

TRAD Week, which takes place from 19th to 26th January, welcomes a very exciting Irish harp and uilleann pipes duo to Letterkenny for 2020.

Tiarnán Ó Duinnchinn and Laoise Kelly will take to the stage at the Regional Cultural Centre on Wednesday, 22nd January with support from The Straddy Session.

Ó Duinnchinn and Kelly play two very identifiable instruments of Ireland. The image and sound of these two instruments are quintessentially Irish in many respects and are like echo chambers into the past.

The tunes On Ar Lorg Na Laochra, the collaboration album from the duo, amongst others, are tunes that come from between 17th to 19th centuries, mostly to be found in old manuscripts.

Laoise Kelly is from Westport, Co Mayo and has three critically acclaimed solo albums ‘Just Harp’ (1999), ‘Ceis’ (2010), and ‘Fáilte Uí Cheallaigh’ (2015), and ‘The Wishing Well’ (2010) a live duo album with fiddle player Michelle O’Brien.

Tiarnán Ó Duinnchinn and Laoise Kelly.

Kelly was a founding member of traditional group Bumblebees with whom she recorded two albums (1997, 1999) and toured extensively internationally.

Throughout her solo career she has recorded on over 60 albums with many of Ireland’s foremost artists including The Chieftains, Christy Moore, Sharon Shannon, Dónal Lunny, Tommy Makem, Matt Molloy, Mary Black, Maighread & Tríona Ní Dhomhnaill, Eimear Quinn, as well as Kate Bush and American country/bluegrass icon Tim O’Brien.

Ó Duinnchinn is an award-winning uilleann piper from Monaghan who started playing when he was around nine years of age in The Armagh Pipers Club. He has been described by many as being one of the most influential pipers of his generation.

He has won four Fleadh Ceoil All-Ireland titles and two Oireachtas titles. In January 2013, Ó Duinnchinn won the Seán Ó Riada Bonn Oir (Gold Medal) competition.

The Straddy Session

The colourful tapestry of music and song of Ireland’s northwest is at the heart of The Straddy Sessions, a new Donegal-based traditional ensemble making its first public appearance.

Band members are singer and guitarist Michael Gallanagh from Inishowen, fiddle-player Barry McLaughlin from Co Tyrone, concertina player Róna Dinkin from Monaghan, flute-player John Lee from Co Leitrim and fiddle player Séamus McGuire from Sligo.

All highly-acclaimed individual musicians, the band originated in informal trad sessions in Letterkenny and Buncrana and in the friendships which developed through a love of playing tunes together.

Upcoming events for The Straddy Session in 2020 include concerts in Paris, Caen and Le Mans. Their eagerly-awaited appearance at Letterkenny Trad Week in January 2020 will be the first public performance of the new line-up.

Further festival highlights include Sharon Shannon, The Lisa O’Neill Trio, Anxo Lorenzo, Jim Murray, Dónal O’Connor & Jack Talty, Clann Mhic Ruairí, Paul Harrigan, Tim Edey & Friends, and Lemoncello.

Letterkenny Trad Week, 19th to 26th January 2020, is brought to you by the Regional Cultural Centre Letterkenny and An Grianán Theatre, with the kind support of Donegal County Council, The Donegal News (Media Partner), Music Network, Arts Council Ireland and Earagail Arts Festival.

More information and tickets for all events are available HERE, Tel 07491 20777, on in person from An Grianán Theatre Box Office, Port Road, Letterkenny.

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