International stars at the Temple Bar TradFest

Moya Brennan
Moya Brennan

Temple Bar TradFest aims to bring Irish traditional music to tens of thousands of Irish and international visitors to Temple Bar from Wednesday to Sunday, January 25-29.

It also aims to do so with affordable prices to performances in Christ Church Cathedral, City Hall, and the Button Factory and hundreds of free street events throughout the Temple Bar area.

Dubliners’ 50th anniversary

The Dubliners are celebrating their 50th anniversary by performing for two special nights on Friday and Saturday in the atmospheric Christ Church Cathedral.

Michael Mc Goldrick Trio and Sephira will delight crowds with high energy performances in the Cathedral on the Thursday, as will the well respected Ralph McTell with Orlaith Keane on the Thursday.

Also not to be missed are the performances in City Hall, with both lunchtime and evening performances, it’s the perfect venue to escape from the hustle and bustle of a busy working day and city life.

During the evenings you can just relax and listen to the musical notes of Noel O Grady (Wednesday), Moya Brennan and Cormac De Barra (Thursday) and Frankie Gavin (Friday) soar up to the beautiful ceiling of City Hall.

Benefit for Pecker Dunne

On Saturday Cór Chúil Aodha, founded by Seán Ó Riada, will enchant audiences with a number of songs. Another special event that should be put into your calendar is the Gala Benefit for Pecker Dunne on Sunday, which starts at 5pm.

He is regarded as an extremely talented musician and song writer as well as being one of the founding fathers of the culture and human rights and equalities of the Travelling community.

Members of his family and special guests will perform at this concert with all proceeds going to the care and well-being of Mr. Dunne. The lunchtime performances include Mick O’ Brien on Uilleann pipes (Wednesday), Edel Fox on concertina (Thursday) and Tommy Sands on guitar (Friday).

Button Factory offers a variety of acts

The Button Factory offers a variety of musical acts so this venue has something for everyone!

Lisa O’Neill (Wednesday) who started writing songs from a very early age and is a born musician and has recently returned from touring with David Grey.

Cathy Jordan, a well known performer from the Irish band Dervish, will be launching her debut, solo album at the festival, with special guests, the talented musical siblings, The Henry Girls (Thursday).

Inishturkbeggers (Friday) will fire up the stage performing trad with a twist including Kings of Leons, the credits of each member of the band is impressive, so putting these experienced players together on stage is going to make one musically, explosive evening for all who attend!

Cultural combination of folk music from Ireland

Fidil and Solo Cissokho perform with special guests Tarab on Sunday evening, their music is a cultural combination of folk music from Ireland, West Africa, Italy and the Balkans.

Then if you fancy joining in a céilí, Tara Céilí band will be performing at the Céilí and Set Dancing on Sunday at 2pm.

This year the TradFest Music Trail has even more exciting musical acts to delight those attending with seventeen venues and over 200 performances. Be warned fiddles will be flying and toes will be tapping as lively, infectious Trad music will fill all the pubs!

Festival Club and singers’ club

We have some well known acts performing including Mick Hanly, Pat Goode, Kevin Glackin and Brian Furlong, the Guinness World Record Holder Dave Browne, Seán O Sé, The Logues and Tupelo.

The crowd favourites, Festival Club and Singers’ Club, will both be making a return this year. Local, talented musicians will also be performing in their usual haunts to entertain both new and old fans.

So to check out more information on the Temple Bar TradFest and its five days and five nights of festive fun and celebration of Irish Traditional Music and Culture, please check out the website

More information about 2012’s Temple Bar Sessions

By Andrew Moore

Andrew Moore is a writer for Irish Music Daily and Ireland Calling. His favourite Irish music bands are the Dropkick Murphys and the Pogues.